Despite what the giant wood hearth at the center of the dining room might suggest, one of the best things on the menu at Maydan, D.C.'s hit restaurant, is an Armenian bulgur wheat salad known as itch. Chefs Gerald Addison and Chris Morgan first discovered the dish—a hearty, flavor-packed salad with pomegranate molasses and added crunch from raw scallions and shishito peppers—on a trip to Beirut. If you can't find red pepper paste, you can purée a jar of drained piquillo peppers.
To learn more, read "Maydan Is a Celebration of Open-Fire Cooking."
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus cooling time
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes, plus cooling time
3 cups water
Kosher salt, to taste
1½ cups bulgur wheat
¼ cup red pepper paste
2 tablespoons tomato paste
¼ cup, plus 2 tablespoons, pomegranate molasses
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups shishito peppers, sliced
1 cup scallions, sliced
1. In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a boil with a healthy pinch of salt. Stir in the bulgur, remove from the heat and cover for 15 to 20 minutes, until the bulgur is cooked through. Spread the bulgur onto a cookie sheet and allow to cool.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the red pepper and tomato pastes, the pomegranate molasses, extra-virgin olive oil, Aleppo pepper, and lemon juice.
3. Place the cooled bulgur into a large mixing bowl and toss with the dressing, shishito peppers and almost all of the scallions. Season with additional salt. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with the remaining scallions and serve.
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