I had decided to make Moroccan chicken tajine for this Sunday’s dinner. Couscous is an obvious side dish—especially since some of my diners are on a low carb diet. The chicken would be well spiced so I thought that the side dish should be a bland-ish canvas for the flavorful sauce.
Couscous is a tiny pasta that cooks almost instantly. If you want to flavor this starch—without overcooking it—you have to either pour the sauce over the cooked couscous or cook the tiny grains of starch in the finished sauce. For this dish I chose the second method.
Karl’s Moroccan Couscous II
¼ cup pine nuts
2 Tbs. butter (olive oil for Vegan)
2 green onions, sliced finely, separate uses
Pinch Kosher salt
2 cloves garlic, finely crushed
⅞ cup chicken broth (vegetable broth for Vegan)
¾ cup couscous
¼ cup red bell pepper, diced
1. Toast the pine nuts in a small dry pan, until browned and fragrant.
Tip. Transfer the pine nuts to a small cup until you need them.
Note: If you leave them in the hot pan, they will burn.
2. Melt the butter in a medium pot and sauté the white parts of the onions with the salt until just soft, about 2 minutes.
3. Pull the onions to the side of the pan and sauté the garlic in the hole in the center until fragrant, about one minute more.
Tip: You may make the dish up to this point ahead of time. Couscous takes only five minutes to cook, so you want to finish this dish just before serving.
4. Add ⅞ of a cup of broth to the pot.
5. When the pot comes to a boil stir in the couscous.
6. Cover the pot and remove it from the heat.
7. Let the pot sit for five minutes undisturbed.
8. Fluff the couscous with a fork and mix in ¾ of the pine nuts and the parts of the green onions.
9. Transfer the couscous to a serving bowl and garnish with the red bell pepper.
10. Serve immediately.