Some days, it feels like just yesterday that I started this blog, while at other times it’s like I’ve been doing it forever. In reality, it’s been but a brief 5 months. Since the blog’s inception, I’ve posted a non-recipe post each Sunday entitled “Lazy Sunday” – the idea being that on Sundays, I still wanted to post, but lazily didn’t want to post a new recipe (and all that entails – planning, making, photographing, etc.). It was intended as a chance to share some stories and thoughts outside of my food world, including things I’m reading, pinning, and planning. It also let me summarize what had happened on Devour each week.
But you guys are mostly here for the recipes, right? I’ve decided to switch it up and only do the Lazy Sunday posts fortnightly (every other week). That way, they can still be an in-case-you-missed-it recap, but the time I would have spent writing the weekly one can go to creating more delicious food to share with you. Sound good? I may or may not rename it; whenever I think of Lazy Sunday, I inevitably think of the SNL Digital Short by the same name (US viewers can find it here) in which Andy Samberg and Christ Parnell rap about cupcakes and the Chronicles of Narnia.
Anyway, I do have a recipe to share today, so let’s talk about that. Reader, I know that you looked at that title and thought, “Ugh, winter, aren’t we way past that by now?” Well, in my hometown we’re still feeling the chills of winter and there is still a fair amount of snow on the ground. Yay, Canada!
However, if I may be poetic for a moment, this salad perfectly represents spring in my town: the white winter vegetables, in this case fennel, endive and cauliflower, make way for some fresh, green chopped herbs like grass poking through the snow. The whole thing is tossed together with a tart, fruity dressing made with pomegranate molasses, the flavour of pomegranate reminiscent of warm, exotic places and the warm summer days to come.
Like traditional tabbouleh, this recipe includes bulgur, parsley, and garlic, but the similarity ends there. This version from Gourmet Today: More than 1000 All-New Recipes for the Contemporary Kitchen (and originally attributed to chefs Samuel and Samantha Clark of Moro in London) is a definite twist on the classic Middle Eastern dish, with the addition of chopped winter vegetables, mint, walnuts, and pomegranate seeds. The resulting combination of flavours is delightfully balanced: the bitterness of the endive, the liquorice-like flavour of the fennel, the fresh herbs, and the tart-sweet dressing infused with garlic and a bit of cinnamon – it all works.
Alas – I was not able to find fresh pomegranate seeds anywhere. I suppose winter in Alberta is not the place for exotic fruits, at least not at the two grocery stores I scoured. This time, I substituted dried cranberries infused with pomegranate juice, and it was still delicious, but do use real pomegranate seeds if you can because their texture and flavour are unique and wonderful in this dish.
The original recipe specifies tossing the dressing with the salad only just before serving, but I like the dressing flavours to marry with the salad flavours; it’s up to you which way you choose. I made this on a Sunday (with dressing added) and took it for my lunch the next 3 days – it is consistently good, but probably the best on the second day. Keep leftovers in the fridge. Bon appetit!
- 1 and ¼ cups coarse bulgur
- 1 large Belgian endive, cored and chopped
- 1 medium fennel bulb, stalks discarded, cored, and chopped
- 1 and ¼ cups cauliflower, cut or broken into ½-inch florets
- ⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ¼ cup chopped fresh mint
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds (or substitute dried cranberries if unavailable)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
- 1 tablespoon water
- ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
- Pinch of black pepper
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon honey (optional - or more to taste)
- In a small bowl, cover bulgur with hot water by 2 inches and soak for 15 minutes, until tender. Drain bulgur well in a sieve and transfer to a large bowl. Add endive, fennel, cauliflower, parsley, mint, walnuts and pomegranate seeds.
- In a small bowl, stir together garlic, cinnamon, pomegranate molasses, water, salt and pepper. Whisk while slowly drizzling in the olive oil and continue whisking until the dressing is emulsified. Taste dressing (it will be tart!) and add honey to sweeten if desired.
- Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to combine. Taste and add salt & pepper as needed. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Keep leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Source: Gourmet Today: More than 1000 All-New Recipes for the Contemporary Kitchen
Note: If you can’t find pomegranate molasses, you can simply reduce pomegranate juice on the stove with some sugar and lemon. I have used Alton Brown’s recipe found here.