One of my favorite starch side dishes, especially with fish, is Pearl or Israeali Couscous like in this recipe with spinach. This is a new twist on the dish I tried the other night with leftover grape tomatoes, although cherry or any other small tomato variety could also be used. It's easy, quick, silky and flavorful. Try it next time your looking for something to serve with meat or seafood.
-1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
-1 Tbsp olive oil + more to drizzle at the end
-1 Tbsp dried minced garlic
-2 cups pearl cousocous
-2 1/2 cups of water
-1/2 cup chicken broth
-1/2 Tbsp dried thyme (or 1 Tbsp fresh)
-salt and pepper to taste
First, half your tomatoes and place in a small bowl. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp olive oil, 1 Tbsp dried minced garlic and 1/2 Tbsp dried thyme and mix until evenly coated. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a small baking sheet with foil and coat with cooking spray. Evenly spread the tomatoes and roast for 15 minutes or until blistered.
Meanwhile bring 2.5 cups of water to a boil. Add 1 tsp salt and 2 cups of couscous. Bring back to a boil then reduce heat to low (simmering) and cover for 8 minutes. Stir every couple minutes.
Remove lid and fluff your couscous with a fork. The liquid should be absorbed. Reduce heat to low and add 1/2 cup chicken broth. Stir
Fold in the roasted tomatoes. Salt and pepper to taste. Also, if desired, you can add more thyme and dried garlic for extra seasoning.
Serve the couscous warm before it dries out. I promise this will add a whole to meaning to the "1-minute couscous" you may be used to. As I said above it is silky and full of flavor without being dry or sticky! Broil some salmon with salt and pepper and you have an easy meal. Or try with one of these seafood recipes I've posted:
Salmon with Apricot and Pesto Glaze
Steamed Mussels in a Saffron White Wine Broth
Sea Scallops with White Wine Mushroom Sauce