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red bulgur bi jara, from Sumac

Red Bulgur bi Jara ('Dirty' bulgur with roast chicken)

Anas Atassi
A wonderfully tasty and simple one-pot (if you don't count the baking dish) meal - perfect for a weeknight.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Main
Cuisine Syrian
Servings 4 people


  • 4 chicken legs with thighs attached


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • salt and pepper


  • 200 gms course bulgur
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 French shallots, peeled but left whole
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 400gm tinned, chopped tomatoes
  • 200 mls chicken stock
  • 1 200gm tinned chick peas, rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped flat leaf parsley for garnish


  • Put the chicken and all marinade ingredients in a large-ish freezer bag, seal and rub the mixture into the chicken well. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
  • Heat oven to 200C
  • Place the chicken in a shallow baking dish, pour the marinade over, cover with foil, and cook for 30 minutes. Turn the grill on, remove the foil and grill until chicken is browned.
  • Continue with the bulgur while the chicken is cooking.
  • Place bulgur into a bowl, cover with boiling water, soak for 5 minutes.
  • In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil on a medium heat. Fry the shallots until golden, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and fry for another minute or two.
  • Stir in the tomato paste and ground spices, cook, stirring, until the sauce browns to intensify the flavours. Add the tomatoes, the drained bulgur and chicken stock. Season.
  • Stir, cover and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Do not allow to cook dry.
  • Once the bulgur is cooked, stir in the chick peas and frozen peas. Heat over low heat to warm through.
  • Remove from heat and allow to stand for 5 minutes, covered.
  • Serve with the chicken, garnish liberally with parsley.
Keyword Chicken
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