Armenian bulgur salad (Itch)

September 2, 2010  •  Category:


Up until a couple of years ago, my knowledge of Armenian cuisine was limited. Even though I had grown up with Armenian friends in school, I had no idea what Armenians ate besides sujuk and basterma.

Then  I heard about an Armenian restaurant called Mayrig and I wanted to try it.

Mayrig is located in a beautiful restored house from the turn of the century; the Armenian dishes we tasted that day were refined and beautifully presented. I was smitten.

This Armenian bulgur salad called Itch, was part of our feast that day. I made it with coarse bulgur instead of the fine bulgur that is traditional. It is moist, light yet  rustic and refreshing with the diced tomatoes and speckles of parsley.

INGREDIENTS: 8 servings

  • 2 cups of coarse bulgur
  • 1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce
  • 3/4 cup of water
  • 1 1/2 cups of diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • olive oil as needed
  • 1 or more red chili pepper (optional)
  • 1 bunch of parsley, leaves chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of pomegranate molasses
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon of hot red pepper paste (can omit it)


  1. Fry the chopped onion in a bit of oil and then add the bulgur; stir a bit,  add tomato sauce, red pepper paste  and water; bring to a simmer and boil gently for 20 to 30 minutes until the bulgur is soft and has absorbed most of the liquid. Cool.
  2. Add the lemon juice, a jiggle or two of olive oil, a tablespoon of pomegranate molasses (if you wish), the chopped parsley, chopped tomatoes and chopped chili pepper (if using). Check for seasoning, salting the mixture as required.


22 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. elra says:

    Healthy and delicious, I am starting to really enjoy bulghur now.

  2. Jen_from_NJ says:

    Your salad looks delicious – light, fresh, and wholesome!

  3. heguiberto says:

    Yum this looks delicious! Another great idea on how to enjoy bulgur. I’ve got make this recipe soon.

  4. Magic of Spice says:

    Pomegranate molasses…I must have some 🙂 This sounds like such a flavorful dish… Beautiful! When you have a moment, we have an award that we wanted to extend to you 🙂

  5. Chef Dennis says:

    I love that pomegranate molasses, I have to look for that! Your bulgar salad sounds delicious, I am always looking for new ways to prepare it for my girls!

  6. Faith says:

    This is so new to me! I love the idea of the tomato sauce with bulgur in this salad. As always, your photos are lovely!

  7. Sushma Mallya says:

    Yummy salad presented in a beautiful way

  8. SYLVIA says:

    I like how the itch says- PAREV- meaning (Hello). Take two icons, bulgur, and tomato sauce, combine them with parsley, and lemon juice, you’ll have out of this world salad. This is a staple in any Armenian house. It’s very addictive, with nutty personality, spoon down the center of a boiled cabbage, tender grape leaf, or lettuce, and roll it up.
    Joumana yours is homey but has a chefy touch to it, how cute is that.
    Bulgur plays very infinite role in the Armenian cuisine, however meat, vegetables, and desserts are prepared in and endless variety of ways, and the names of meals are kept in the language that they are popularly known. Who wouldn’t want to serve this salad. Thank you Joumana.

    • Joumana says:

      Sylvia: addictive is right! I would have spoonful and say OK, this is it! and then another and another; I had already consumed half the plate when I realized I needed to stop.

  9. Katerina says:

    I love bulgur, I use it a lot in my pies. I like its sweetness. This salad is so unique.

  10. grace says:

    i absolutely LOVE the feel of bulgur in my mouth, and it has such a unique and distinct flavor. this salad looks wonderful, joumana!

  11. Angie's Recipes says:

    This bulgur salad looks quite fancy and flavourful.

  12. Heni says:

    What a nice refreshing salad!

  13. Priya says:

    Bulgur salad looks very yummy, colourful and flavourful..

  14. Pauline says:

    Looks gorgeous. I was just wondering if that is a raw or a cooked green pepper in the picture?

  15. Mo says:

    How beautiful! There seems to be only a couple of things that I ever do with bulgur, so I’d love to try this sometime. 🙂

  16. A Canadian Foodie says:

    The pomegranate molasses would make all of the difference!

  17. Delishhh says:

    Great salad. I have to try this out.

  18. Lentil Breakdown says:

    I love how you served the filled pepper on top of the filling. What a great idea!

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