This delicious salad is sort of a my version of a Turkish Tabbouleh.  Originally from southern part of the country, Kisir is different from more common versions of this salad.  The addition of tomato paste and red pepper paste turns bulgar reddish color and adds an earthy flavor to the finished dish.



  • 2 cups bulgur
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Juice from 1 lemon (or 2 Tbsp pomegranate molasses)
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp red pepper paste or 1 Tbsp harissa
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 medium sized tomatoes (~1 1/3 cup), seeded and diced
  • 2-3 Israeli cucumbers (~1 1/3 cup), diced
  • 1 yellow or orange bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 scallion (or 1/3 cup red onion), minced
  • 1/2-1 cup parsley, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp green onion or chives, sliced
  • 4-5 springs mint (optional)
  • Lettuce leaves, for serving (optional)


In a large bowl combine the bulgar, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, tomato and chili paste.   Mix until evenly distributed and stir in the boiling water.  Cover with a lid and let it sit while preparing the rest of the ingredients.  The bulgar will soften while absorbing the water.

After prep is completed, add the remaining ingredients to the bowl, check the seasoning and mix.  Transfer the bowl to the fridge for minimum 4 hours or until bulgar grains are nice and soft.

Traditionally Kisir is eaten with lettuce leaves by stuffing them with salad and eating with hands.  But you can serve this unique tabbouleh as an appetizer, side dish, or/and a main meal.