I’m often trying to find fun things to do with friends here. Don’t get me wrong, I love drinking tea and eating cookies ( and trying to keep my kids from having a sugar overdose and jumping on their froshes with their shoes on). But when a friend of mine offered to come over and help me learn how to cook local food, I jumped at the opportunity! All of my favorite things at one time : cooking and being with people, especially local friends.
So we set out to make couscous. This is THE MEAL of this country. It is what it is known for. Families come together every Friday to eat it. It is a big deal. Hence the reason I have been hesitant to even attempt it. But my friend said it was easy, so off we went.
(I’m going to include the ingredients and directions just incase anyone wants to try it. Do it!! And let me know how it goes!!)
What you need:
1/2 kilo couscous ( about 1 lbs)
1 onion, sliced
1 lbs of meat of your choice (I did beef, but you can do whatever you want)
2 zucchini squash
1 tomato, grated
(I also used a half kilo of pumpkin as we eat that in savory dishes as. Vegetable here.)
1 tsp turmeric
A bunch of cilantro tied together
1 beef or chicken bouillon cube
1 tablespoon tomato paste.
Ok, first slice the onions thinly and place in a pot with a little bit of olive oil, the meat, and about a half cup of water.
Allow this to cook for a little bit while you chop the veggies. Add the carrots and turnips to the pot along with the spices
Also, grate a tomato and add the tomato paste to the pot. Now just let this all cook until tender. Probably at least a half hr.
Now. Let this cook and work on the couscous.
* if you live in A place where you can only get couscous in a box, ignore these steps. They are irrelevant. Just cook the couscous according to the box, call it a day, and breathe a sigh of relief that you can ignore these steps.
So basically, we are going to cook the couscous 3 x. First we clean it and get any rocks, or bugs out.
Rinse it and mix with a little bit of olive oil and water, and set in the pot to cook.
While this is cooking, take some of the cooking liquid and put it in a pot with the pumpkin, squash, and potatoes to cook separately. Let this cook until tender and then turn it off.
It is time for the first couscous fluff (that’s not a technical word, but it best describes the process) :).
Sprinkle about a half cup of water over the couscous a little bit at a time, while you fluff.
Let it sit for a couple minutes and then put it back in the pot for cook #2.
After the second cook, take it out and repeat the process.
Put it back into the pot for another 10 minutes or so and then remove from the heat, fluff a little more and let it sit.
When you are ready to serve, heat the couscous again the the pot. When it is heated place in a large bowl and make a well in the center. Place the meat in the center in the well, and place the vegetables around the meat. Use a ladle to pour the sauce overtop, just make sure it doesn’t end up like soup! 🙂 you can always leave extra sauce for everyone to put on themselves.
Sorry I don’t actually have a picture of the final product!! Maybe just google couscous and you can check out what it should look like! 🙂
My friend and I are thinking of making this a weekly thing and sharing our results with you all! What do you all think? A weekly blog post of what we make, with instructions so maybe you can try and make something a little out of the box. Give me your thoughts!!
Happy Couscous Making!