Are you looking for a cheap, simple, and tasty dish? Then, Turkish bulgur dumplings could be just the thing for you. The preparation is very easy and the results are hearty, flavorful dumplings served in an aromatic tomato sauce. Sprinkle fresh parsley on top and a dollop of dairy-free yogurt, if desired.

Fellah Köftesi: Turkish Bulgur Dumplings [Vegan]




Cooking Time




For the Bulgur Dumplings:

  • 3 cups, plus 2 1/4 tablespoons finely ground bulgur (köftelik bulgur)
  • 1/2 cup, plus 1 1/2 tablespoons dry polenta
  • 1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
  • 2 tablespoons tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons dried mint
  • 1 teaspoon paprika powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt, chili, and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup spelt or wheat flour
  • 1/2-3/4 cup tomato purée, plus more as needed
  • 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flax seeds, plus 3 tablespoons water)

For the Tomato Sauce:

  • 3 medium to large tomatoes (the bigger, the more sauce)
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 cloves of garlic (depending on size and taste, more or less), chopped or pressed
  • Scant 1/2 cup tomato purée (possibly slightly more)
  • Salt, dried mint, chili, and pepper to taste
  • A pinch of sugar
  • Fresh parsley, for topping


To Make the Dumplings:

  1. Combine the ground bulgur and polenta in a large bowl and mix. Pour the lukewarm water, mix it with a spoon, and let it sit for 15 minutes.
  2. Add tomato paste, spices, salt, and flour and mix again.
  3. Add tomato purée and knead everything with the hands. Add the flax egg and knead again. If the dough is too dry, add more tomato purée. The dough should be very stiff, but pliable.
  4. Wet your hands, then roll the dough into several long "snakes." Cut into dumplings.
  5. Cook the dumplings in boiling water for about 15-25 minutes or until they float to the top, like ravioli.

To Make the Sauce:

  1. Peel the skin off the tomatoes. In a frying pan, add the olive oil, the tomato paste, and cook for about 8 minutes. Then add the tomatoes, spices, salt, and sugar and simmer for a further 5-8 minutes over low heat. Add more tomatoes if necessary. Lower heat and continue simmering until the dumplings are ready.
  2. In a pan, add dumplings and sauce as desired. Stir to coat the dumplings and cook until warmed through.
  3. Serve topped with parsley.

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