israeli couscous

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Though I don’t normally post many any recipes on MML, today I thought I’d share one that has been my new go-to meal for dinner and lunches lately. Admittedly this could easily be a tasty side dish, but I often end up re-heating it on it’s own when I need a light dinner after work.

I first tried the dish at Mr. Lively’s aunt’s home over Thanksgiving. I loved the dish so much I was determined to learn how to create it myself. Something that I don’t often do, which says a lot about this amazing couscous.

The ingredients can be seen above. The recipe that I’ve made very closely follows the recipe on the back of the purple Trader Joe’s Israeli Couscous box. And for about $1.70 for the box, it can be a pretty cheap dish. But for those who don’t live near a TJ’s, you can also make it using non-TJ Israeli Couscous seen in the blue container on the right.

Here’s what you will need to make it the way that I do,

3 tbs butter

1/2 cup pine nuts

1/2 cup shallots, finely chopped

1 1/2 cups Israeli couscous

1 pinch cinnamon

1 3/4 cup water or chicken broth

1/2 tsp salt

First, chop your shallots.

Take 1 Tbs. of the butter and melt it in a large sauce pan on medium/low heat. Add pine nuts to the melted butter and stir occasionally. Once the nuts are browned, put them aside in a small bowl.

Then in the same pot, add the remaining 2 Tbs. butter to the pan and add the shallots. Let the shallots soften and sweat out for a few minutes.

Measure out 1 to 1.5 cups of dry Israeli couscous.

(Bird measuring cups from Urban Outfitters a few seasons ago.)

Add the dry couscous and cinnamon to the pan with the shallots and let them toast a bit until lightly browned.

Then add 1.75 cups of water or chicken broth to the pot. Bring the heat up so that the water or broth comes to a boil.

Once the water is boiling, reduce head to a simmer and cover with a lid.

When the water is mostly absorbed into the couscous, I add my raisins to get them nice and plump. Then, after the remaining liquid is absorbed by the couscous, I add the pine nuts back to the pot and serve.

I’m sure this would also be great with added herbs (TJ’s recipe calls for parsley) or protein like chicken or tofu. But for me, I like it just as it is.


This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. Adding to my list of things to try! Now that I’m home during the day I do most of our dinner cooking (although Ryan actually LIKES cooking so we’re both kind of bummed that he doesn’t get to cook each night). I recently rediscovered my love of couscous but I haven’t gotten too fancy adding much to it. But try stuffing this couscous into a hollowed out red pepper and roasting it. Mmm!

  2. I am not really a couscous person, but this looks awesome! thanks for sharing!

  3. Clara

    I LOVE this dish! It looks so good! I love adding dried fruit to grain dishes- can’t wait to make this one.

  4. CB

    Mmmm, looks delicious! Those pictures are really pretty, too. And I also noticed that bird measuring cup and thought it was so cute!

  5. Jess

    Thanks, ladies! If you try the dish, I hope you like it as much as I do!

    Maggie, never thought to do it in a pepper, thanks!

    Alyssa, thanks! I think I might try adapting that for couscous!

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