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Burghul bi Jibn wal Batinjan (Bulgur with Cheese and Eggplant)

Yield 6 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)
Combining bulgur with eggplant and halumi cheese, this Syrian favorite (pronounced boor-GHOUL bee jeebn wal bet-in-JAN) makes a lovely vegetarian entrée. Coarse- or medium-ground bulgur works best. Halumi is a firm, chewy, rather salty cheese. To reduce its saltiness, soak the cheese in a bowl of fresh water for half an hour. You can substitute mozzarella.


  • 1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) diced halumi cheese
  • 6 cups (1-inch) cubed eggplant (about 1 pound)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 4 cups vertically sliced onion
  • 2 cups uncooked coarse-ground bulgur
  • 3 1/4 cups boiling water
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Nutrition Information

  • calories 325
  • caloriesfromfat 30 %
  • fat 11 g
  • satfat 4.8 g
  • monofat 2.3 g
  • polyfat 0.6 g
  • protein 13.5 g
  • carbohydrate 47.1 g
  • fiber 12 g
  • cholesterol 21 mg
  • iron 1.6 mg
  • sodium 622 mg
  • calcium 306 mg

How to Make It

  1. Soak cheese in a bowl of water for 30 minutes. Drain.

  2. Place eggplant in a colander; sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Toss well. Drain 30 minutes. Rinse and pat dry with paper towels.

  3. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 15 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt, bulgur, boiling water, and pepper; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium low, and simmer 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

  4. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplant; sauté 10 minutes or until browned. Combine cheese, bulgur mixture, eggplant, and 2 teaspoons oil in a Dutch oven. Toss well to coat; place over medium heat 5 minutes or until cheese is soft. Serve hot.