Do you know what couscous is? A National dish in Morocco, couscous is actually a pasta available in very small or large grain sizes. The larger size (caper size) is referred to as Israeli couscous. The smaller size is more popular and most often served in restaurants. Couscous cooks fast and makes a nutritious wholesome side dish.
Make Half the Grains in your diet Whole Grains
For more dietary fiber look for "whole wheat" couscous. Tonight, we used Hodgson Mill's brand of whole grain couscous. (Eat whole grains and products made from whole grains for better health!) Reading product labels can be helpful. Look for the words "whole grain" on package labels when you are shopping.
American recipes call for boiling the grain, but authentic recipes for couscous "steam" the grain. For this recipe we boiled the couscous.
Healthy Cooking on a Budget
Couscous makes an affordable and healthy side grain to accompany the rest of your meal. Serve couscous with a lean protein entree and side vegetable for a balanced meal. You'll find this recipe super easy to make and it takes only a few minutes to cook.
Here is our favorite way to prepare couscous, which was inspired from a Cooking Light recipe many years ago:
Serves 5 (90g serving size)
2/3 cup (104g) whole wheat couscous, uncooked
1 cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
NO added salt necessary when using chicken broth
1 Tablespoon (14g) olive oil
1 teaspoon (2g) sweet curry powder
pinch minced dried hot peppers from your garden or hot pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon (0.5g) grated ginger
1 teaspoon (3g) minced garlic
2 Tablespoons (20g) minced onion
2 Tablespoons raisins or Craisins (40g) or other chopped dried fruit
1 Tablespoon (4g) minced fresh parsley
1/2 ounce (14g) toasted almond slices
Putting it all together
- In a small pot, saute the onion in olive oil; add the garlic and ginger; stir in the spices
- Add broth and dried fruit; turn off heat
- Set aside until ready to make.
- When ready: bring the broth mixture to a boil; stir in the couscous. Turn off the heat. Cover and let sit 5 minutes.
- Stir in the toasted almond slivers just before serving.
GardenCuizine Whole Grain Couscous Nutrition Data (with chicken broth and Craisins): using USDA Nutrient Reference data
Good Source: Dietary Fiber
Serving size 1/5 of recipe: 90g; Calories 158; total fat 5g; Saturated fat 1g; trans fat 0; cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 113mg (5% DV); total carbohydrate 28g (2 Carb exchanges); Dietary Fiber 3g (13% DV); Sugars 6g; Protein 5g; Vitamin E ~1.3mg (~7% DV); Iron 1.2mg (7% DV)
Whole Grains Council notes that couscous is not a grain, "There is no couscous plant!"
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