For some reason that I can’t quite comprehend, Mike doesn’t like Chinese food. (Maybe I do understand a little…it seems to be he doesn’t care for any foods his mom didn’t make when he was growing up. But I don’t think this theory is quite right either, because there are things he likes just fine – ahem, pizza and chocolate cheesecake – that he never had growing up in Syria.) So, being just a little crafty, I had a trick up my sleeve for getting him to eat this Asian-inspired dish.
Mike would never have touched this if it were regular fried rice (I can just hear him now…You know I don’t like Chinese food, honey!), but I swapped out the rice for bulgur wheat and he didn’t recognize it as a Chinese dish. (Plus it didn’t hurt that bulgur is a classic favorite of his since he’s used to eating it in things like tabbouleh, mujadarra, and kibbeh.) And of course the fried egg on top only sweetened the deal.
So ladies, do you have any tricks for getting your family to eat something they wouldn’t normally eat? (Please share…I could use all the help I can get!)
1/2 cup bulgur wheat
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1 cup boiling water
2 cloves garlic, grated
1-inch piece of ginger, grated
1 tablespoon tamari sauce (or soy sauce)
1 tablespoon honey
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 a small/medium head of cabbage, chopped
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2-4 large eggs (depending on how hungry you are), fried*
2 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced (for garnish)
Combine the bulgur, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and boiling water in a medium bowl; cover and let sit until tender, about 20 minutes. Strain out the water in a fine mesh sieve, gently pushing with the back of a wooden spoon to extract as much water as possible.
Whisk together the garlic, ginger, tamari sauce, honey, and black pepper in a small bowl; set aside.
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over high heat; add the onion, cabbage, vinegar, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook until slightly softened, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Turn heat down to medium, add the garlic mixture, and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the strained bulgur and cook 1 minute more, stirring constantly.
Transfer to serving dishes and top with fried eggs and sliced scallion.
*I use a nonstick skillet with a little bit of olive oil to fry my eggs; poached eggs would also work well here.