Did you know that couscous is actually pasta? I kid you not.
There are a number of couscous varieties, but at
Israeli couscous, also known as pearl couscous, is a large grain couscous made from a blend of semolina flour and water. It is larger than the
In the 1950s, Israel went through an austerity period where a lot of food resources were scarce and rationed, including rice, a dietary staple. Couscous was created based on a desperate need to come up with an alternative food source for the Israeli people. To this day, couscous remains a staple in households throughout Israel, and across the world.
What I love about couscous is its texture. It reminds me of perfectly cooked, al dente pasta. It can seem intimidating to cook for some, take it too far and you’re left with a stodgy mess, not far enough and you’ve got
As a stand-alone ingredient, couscous lacks
For perfectly cooked couscous, boil the grains for 10 minutes and then turn the heat off, allowing the couscous to sit in the water for a further five minutes. Strain and allow to cool completely before using it as your base ingredient in a salad of your choice. I look at this humble ingredients as a blank canvas and you can be as creative as you like with what you add. I believe we need to stop looking at ingredients like couscous as a sideshow item but rather as the main act of any meal. It’s so versatile, delicious and nutritious.
For a Mediterranean style salad, which we serve with our Succulent Breast, this is what we suggest but don't feel limited to these ingredients. I haven't specified quantities either because I believe that the food should speak through you and you'll know when enough is enough.
Cucumber, cut into
Baby tomatoes, cut in half
Feta cheese, cubes or crumbled, whichever you prefer
Spring onion, finely sliced
Baby corn, chargrilled is always the best, however, can be
Parsley, finely chopped
Mint, also finely chopped
Lemon juice, add to taste, but don't be shy! It really does enhance the
And don't forget to season!
One a final note, Pearl couscous is still hitting the South African markets as a trendy ingredient and so might be a bit difficult to find at your local grocery store, but not to worry, we have you covered and always try our best to stock it in our deli. So come on past to give it a try at lunch or buy a box to take home. And if you’re stuck, don't be shy to ask us for some ideas ;)
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