Bulgur is classified as a whole grain and makes a healthy and satisfying vegetarian meal or a side to grilled meats. We like the light nutty flavor it lends to recipes. I always keep #2 medium grind bulgur on hand whenever tabbouleh, pilaf or salads such as this beckon me. To enjoy the best array of flavors this salad has to offer, serve at room temperature. (The proportions of vegetables and beans to bulgur can be adjusted easily to family preferences.)
In large frypan saute the bulgur in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, stirring until the bulgur is lightly golden brown (see photo.)
Carefully and slowly add 1 cup of the chicken stock to bulgur (it will sizzle and steam up). Then continue stirring in the rest of chicken stock. Cover and cook on medium-low until the liquid is absorbed and the grains are tender. Remove from heat and scoop bulgur into large mixing bowl and allow to cool to room temperature (this can be speeded up by refrigerating the bulgur for several minutes.)
When bulgur has cooled to room temperature, add the cucumber, green onions, celery, parsley and beans.
For dressing, whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice and salt (optional.) Drizzle dressing over bulgur mixture and toss lightly. Taste for seasoning, adding additional lemon juice and/or oil or other seasonings as desired.
I must say I was skeptical this would turn out 'worthy'. I tried it however and it was well worth second helpings. Now of course it's not your usual American-flavorful-flare, but for what this really is: a light calorie, whole-grain, heart-healthy food --- it's a vegetarian's dream food.
Can act as an afternoon snack or complement to an entrée. 5 star rating for low-calorie and extreme overall healthiness.