Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Couscous and Harissa

Copyright 2011 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
Couscous is a Berber dish made from semolina and is traditionally served with meat or vegetable stews and is a staple in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. The first time I tried couscous was when I made Amy Finley's Moroccan Chicken with Squash and Plums. I have been hooked ever since. It really blends well with this aromatic dish and the best thing about it, you can just set it and forget it. That is how easy to cook couscous. You can definitely bump it up a notch and garnish it with almonds and parsley.


4 cups couscous
4 cups chicken broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup onions, finely diced
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

1. Heat the oil over medium heat in a deep pot. Add the garlic and onions 
    and saute until softened. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Add the broth and heat until it boils. Turn off the heat and add the 
    couscous. Stir to mix and cover. Let it sit undisturbed for 5 minutes. 

3. Fluff the couscous and top with your choice of toppings. 

Copyright 2011 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
Harissa is a hot chili sauce often used in North African dishes. It is made from chili peppers and a number of aromatic spices and is used as a marinade in meat stews. It is slowly gaining popularity in Moroccan dishes as witnessed by the recipe I used it for. It is quite hard to find them in the grocery aisles so I make my own and I keep the rest of it in the freezer for future use. 

Harissa - Adapted*

10-12 dried Guajillo peppers
3 garlic cloves, diced
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp caraway seeds
1/2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp olive oil + extra

1. Reconstitute the peppers in hot water until softened. Remove the stems, 
    seeds and the spine. 

2. In a blender, combine the rest of the ingredients and at high setting, 
    blitz. You may need to add more olive oil to form a smooth paste. 

3. Use right away and freeze the extra for later use. 

* by Saad Fayed

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