Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pearl Couscous with Olives, Tomatoes, and Feta (revisited)

Before leaving to go on a Halloween costume hunt yesterday, I realized I need a quick lunch. Of course, I'd finished off any leftovers I had the day before and I don't tend to keep quick meals on hand. I decided I was in the mood for pearl couscous and I knew I had a tiny bit of leftover feta that would pair nicely with it. As I peered into the open fridge, I also found olives and sundried tomatoes. I started throwing everything together for a quick lunch when I began to realize that what I was making seemed vaguely familiar. The funny thing is, I think this version of the recipe is easier AND more flavourful. I had a friend complain before she added feta to the original (she was making it directly from the SK version) that it didn't have enough flavour, but with this method, you cook the couscous with the sundried tomatoes and olives giving the couscous much more flavour than just pouring a tomato sauce on the couscous at the end and tossing it with olives. I didn't have any fresh herbs on hand, but I would've added basil if I'd had some. I also didn't add any salt to this dish as I thought it got enough from the chicken stock, olives, and feta, but feel free to salt. You'll also note the couscous is cooked slightly differently, based on general directions from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.

The amounts below made one portion for me. If you're serving it as a side, it should be enough for two portions.

Pearl Couscous with Olives, Tomatoes, and Feta (revisited)

1/2 cup pearl couscous
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 sundried tomatoes, chopped (maybe 1/4 cup)
Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped (approx 1/4 cup?)
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp chicken stock
black pepper, 3 grinds (or to taste)
2 tbsp crumbled feta cheese (or to taste)
chopped basil if you have any (I didn't)

1. In a small saucepan, heat oil. Brown pearl couscous in the oil for a few minutes.
2. Add garlic and cook until garlic is browned.
3. Add sundried tomatoes, olives, chicken stock, and black pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and let simmer for 10 - 15 minutes.
4. Remove heat and let stand for 5 minutes.
5. Serve couscous. Sprinkle with feta cheese and fresh herbs if you have any.

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