Siyez bulgur or siyez einkorn, as it’s also known, is the oldest known species of wheat in existence today. ‘Einkorn’ refers to its single grain structure. These heirloom grains are processed into bulgur, which is then milled into flour. Its nutritious, antioxidant- and protein-rich content contains low levels of gluten, making it easier to digest for people with sensitive stomachs.
Nature’s oldest wheat
Earliest records of this ancient grain date back to about 7,500 BCE, when it was first cultivated in the northern Turkish province of Kastamonu, not far from the Black Sea. The evolution of einkorn wheat from its wild variety to its domesticated subspecies is testament to this grain’s unique ability to withstand even the harshest climate and soil conditions.
The domesticated einkorn (triticum monococcum) has larger seeds and intact seed heads, making it easier to cultivate than the wild variety (triticum boeoticum). Once harvested, the einkorn grains are soaked in boiling and then cold water repeatedly, before being laid out to dry in the sun. The seed heads are then ground to remove their husks and crushed to form bulgur. The resulting bulgur is then sun-dried for one or two days longer before being packaged for sale.
Cultivation has since expanded to central and southern Europe, as well as southwest Asia.
Aroma Analysis: Bulgur
An aroma analysis of bulgur reveals that this ancient grain contains primarily green, woody scents. However, the process of soaking and sun-drying the seed heads causes the bulgur to take on an added spicy, tonka bean-like aroma, as well as vanilla and maple-scented notes.