Vegan Tomato Kibbeh
- 1 1/2 cups / 285 g fine bulgur (#1 grade)
- 5 sprigs fresh parsley
- 2 sprigs fresh mint
- 1 medium-size sweet onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 large, ripe tomatoes (1 pound)
- 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded, cored, and coarsely chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- Few grinds of black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons crushed dried mint (see note at bottom)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup / 120 mL extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
Place the bulgur in a medium mixing bowl. In a food processor, pulse the parsley and mint until they are finely chopped, but not pureed. Add the onion and continue pulsing until it is also finely chopped, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the herb-onion mixture into the mixing bowl with the bulgur.
Halve the tomatoes through the stem end and use your fingers to pull out the seeds. Discard the seeds and coarsely chop the tomato. Add the tomatoes and red bell pepper to the processor. Pulse a few times, until they are finely chopped but not liquid, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Scrape this mixture into the mixing bowl.
Knead together the bulgur, herb-onion mixture, and tomato mixture, seasoning with salt, pepper, cinnamon, cayenne, crushed dried mint, lemon juice, and olive oil. Let the kibbeh rest for about 1 hour at room temperature, so that the bulgur will soak up the juices and soften. Taste the kibbeh and adjust the seasonings.
Serve the kibbeh by spreading it to about 1/2-inch / 1.5 cm thickness on a platter. Using the tip of an overturned spoon or the tines of a fork, decoratively score the top of the kibbeh by making ridges all over. Chill until you’re ready to serve the kibbeh, and then drizzle generously with more olive oil, and serve.