Posts Tagged ‘couscous’

Lemon-Rosemary Chicken with Herbed Chicken Couscous

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009

I make this chicken & couscous dish every so often. It’s actually very nearly the recipe on the back of the package of Near East Herbed Chicken couscous. There are a few reasons I like this dish: First, it’s very easy to make. Second, it’s very tasty, with bright, fresh flavors. Third, it’s  healthy (very little oil is used, and one chicken breast with a serving of couscous is less than 350 calories, combined).

I’ve been making this for awhile–it’s actually one of my dad’s favorites out of all the dishes I make.

Lemon-Rosemary Chicken with Herbed Couscous

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon fresh or dried rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons white wine
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon lemon juice, divided
  • 1 package Near East herbed chicken couscous

1. Bring 1 & 3/4 cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan. When the water comes to a boil, add the couscous, spice sack, 1/2 teaspoon of rosemary, and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and cover. Set aside.

2. Pound chicken breasts to 1/4 inch thickness. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Dredge in dried bread crumbs. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken breasts and cook, turning once, until the chicken is browned on all sides and heated through (about 9-11 minutes).

3. Mix white wine and lemon juice together in a small bowl. When chicken is cooked through, carefully add the wine/lemon mixture to the pan. Cook for 1-2 more minutes until liquid is gone.

4. Fluff couscous with a fork and serve with chicken.

Toasted Israeli Couscous with Pine Nuts

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

In case you aren’t familiar, Israeli couscous is completely different from normal couscous. The regular couscous, which you’ve probably had before, is a middle eastern grain dish, shaped like little tiny dots of pasta. It cooks like rice, and is good for just about anything you’d use rice for. It’s quite tasty, and there are more and more options available in the regular grocery store these days: different flavors, different varieties, different brands. David’s not crazy about it, but Leah and I like couscous a lot.

In contrast, Israeli couscous rather than being made from a grain directly, is just small pearls of pasta. It has a lot in common with Orzo, actually, but the pasta is smaller and completely round.

This recipe, from the Bon Apetit Fast, Easy, Fresh cookbook, was pretty simple to make, but very, flavorful. The cooking method reminds me of a risotto, and maybe that’s why it shouldn’t surprise me that the couscous thickened like a risotto, and took on a sort of creamy texture. The toasted pine nuts added a lot of flavor to the dish as well. We had this with the Valentine’s Day Pork Chops, but I’m sure we’ll make it again. It was really good, and a nice change of pace from our usual repertoire of side dishes.

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Toasted Israeli Couscous with Pine Nuts
Adapted from Bon Apetit’s Fast, Easy, Fresh Cookbook

  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2/3 cup pine nuts (about 3 1/2 ounces)
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 3 cups (16 ounces) Israeli toasted couscous
  • 1 large cinnamon stick
  • 2 fresh or dried bay leaves
  • 3 1/2 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup of white wine
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh Italian parsley

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add pine nuts and stir until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to small bowl.

Melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter in same pan over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until golden, about 10 minutes. Add couscous, cinnamon stick, and 2 bay leaves and stir until couscous browns slightly, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add broth, wine,  and salt and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until couscous is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Stir in parsley and pine nuts. Season with black pepper. Transfer to serving dish.

Note: As I was making this recipe, I noticed a similarity in ingredients to how we make our risotto, and decided to sub the white wine for a portion of the broth. It turned out really well.