Have you heard pearl couscous? Have you eat it before?
Also calls Ptitim in Hebrew, other calls Israeli couscous. In some countries calls mograbieh/ moghrabieh or giant couscous or fregola. It's small balls of toasted semolina flour. Not technically a grain, but more like pasta.
Beside bread, couscous is a staple dish in Mediterranean area. Beside pearl couscous there is also Moroccan couscous which has smaller grain than pearl couscous. Both have high nutrition and low fat.
As an Asian this dish is part of my cuisine adventures. Mostly it took me several times to taste one food for make me like that food, but for this pearl couscous I instantly like it at 1st plate.
The unique chewy texture of this dish make me think of other yummy variation I could create from it. Last time I made couscous salad but I didn't satisfied with the taste.. So maybe I should start with simple dish first like this simple couscous pilaf.
And for make more special on our dinner table, I serve this pearl couscous pilaf with roasted smoke paprika which already became my family favorite.
These dish are perfect and fulfill all things you want to provide for your family dinner yet simple and quick to make. For complete it I made simple tomato salad and parsley. You can add some arugula and fresh mint too- I didn't have stock of it.
For making Salad dressing I simply mix some freshly lemon juice with olive oil, seasoned with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Keep in a small jar until ready to use.
And for making smoked paprika roasted chicken, you should marinate chicken and all other ingredients at least 2 hours before-- mostly I prepare a night before so I have best smoke paprika flavor seeped to my chicken perfectly in next day.
You know for daily home cooking I never exactly measure the spices/ ingredients I use... so the recipe below approximately mostly I made. Of course the exact taste may really according to your liking e.g savory or the spicy flavor your family prefer. You might add some more salt and pepper later according to your personal taste.
Smoked paprika roasted chicken with pearl couscous pilaf recipe
For smoked paprika roasted chicken:
- 4 chicken thighs or mix with wings (best part for this recipe)
- 2 big potatoes, cut into wedges
- 1 tbsp spicy smoked paprika powder-- you may use all sweet smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp sweet smoked paprika powder
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp salt or to taste
- generous pinch of dried oregano (about 1 tbsp)
- about 1 tbsp olive oil or other cooking oil
- about 2 tbsp water
Pre heat oven at 200°C. Move chicken and potatoes into heat proof wide dish/ tray. Try to arrange the chicken in single layer, cover the tray with aluminium foil and roast them about 30 minutes. lower the the temperature at 180°C and take your aluminium cover then continue to roast about 35~45 minutes more or until done. Potatoes should be soft enough and chicken golden brown on surface.
For making pearl couscous pilaf:
- about 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cup pearl couscous
- about 3 cup hot chicken/ meat broth
- pinch of salt
After all liquid absorbed and couscous soft, turn off heat then cover the pan tightly. I use my kitchen towel to line my pan lid so steam can trapped perfectly inside pan.
About 15 minutes later, open the lid and using a fork mix and loosen couscous. It's ready to serve.
For Making salad:
In small bowl, mix about 4~5 tbsp olive oil with freshly squeezed lemon juice, salt and pepper. Taste the taste according as your liking. this dressing ready to use to any salad you like.
For serving, I roasted few carliston/ green chili pepper directly over the stove, you may roast them in oven too.
Serve it warm.
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