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Video:Seasonal Vegetable Couscous

with John Mitzewich

If you're bored of the same old starches, then shake things up with an amazing vegetable couscous. Light, fluffy, and subtly flavored with fresh veggies, this couscous will please the palate, but won't keep you trapped in the kitchen all day.See Transcript

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Transcript:Seasonal Vegetable Couscous

Today I'm going to show you how to make a seasonal vegetable couscous. OK, Admit it, you're bored of the same old starches. It's time to shake it up a little bit, and we're doing couscous.

What is Couscous?

Couscous is indigenous to North Africa, and very popular in the Mediterranean. It's actually not really a grain. Its tiny particles of semolina wheat, so it's like a tiny pasta.

Vegetable Couscous Ingredients

We're going to need:
  • 2 1/2 cups of couscous
  • 2 cups of some boiling stock
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1 cup zucchini
  • 1 cup yellow squash
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • salt and cayenne pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup of Italian parsley

Prepare the Couscous

Alright, pour your couscous into a bowl, add the salt – I'm using 1 tsp - the cayenne, and 1/2 the oil. Now, here is a crucial step: we're are going to take a fork and stir until every grain is coated with oil. How will you know? It will look like wet sand. See that. This is a really, really important step and I'll explain why later. Another tip is to have your foil ready.

Prepare the Vegetables

We're going to take the rest of the oil and add it to a hot sauté pan and add the vegetables and sauté on high heat. Now, any veggies will work for this, that's why I called it seasonal vegetable. What ever you can find cheap at the store that looks good, that's what you want to use. So just dice those up, I did about a 1/4 inch dice.

Caramelize the Vegetables

We want to cook these veggies about halfway. We just want to get a little bit of caramelization going. They are going cook the rest of the way in the bowl.

Mix the Vegetables With the Couscous

Add them to your couscous. And mix with the fork, yes again with the fork. Mix them well, until all the veggies are mixed in with the couscous. And then you're going to have your boiling stock ready, you can do it on the stove or in the microwave. Pour over the 2 cups of boiling hot liquid. Give it a little shake and tap, and cover quickly and tightly the bowl of couscous with the foil.

Allow the Couscous to Sit

This is like magic, in 5 minutes the couscous is going to steam and absorb all that delicious stock and vegetable flavors, and then we're going to fluff it with a fork. This is very critical. Again with the fork? Yes, again with the fork. We have to separate all the grains of couscous, that's why we coated them with the olive oil. This is what gives it that beautiful fluffy texture.

Fluff and Serve the Couscous

Go ahead and stir in your herb. Keep fluffing it so that every grain is separate. By the way, as a bonus the next day, the leftovers you can serve cold as a salad. Alright, this is a really nice dish. How nice? They named it twice… couscous. I hope you give this a try. Enjoy.

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