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North African Chicken Couscous
1 hour 15 minutes 30 minutes active
We got an education in couscous in Tunisia, including a lesson from Amel Cherif, a home cook who showed us the basics of making couscous light and flavorful at her apartment on the outskirts of Tunis. For our version, we use an 8-quart pot fitted with a stackable steamer insert that sits on top. If you don’t own one, a large pot and a folding steamer basket worked well, too. Whisking the liquid from the stew into the steamed couscous is a key step, deeply flavoring the grain-like pasta and helping it stay light, fluffy and distinct. We especially liked this dish made with our homemade harissa. Among store-bought brands, we preferred DEA, which is sold in a tube and in cans. We start the recipe using 1/4 cup of harissa to flavor the stew, then finish by mixing another 1/2 cup into the stew liquid just before whisking it with the steamed couscous. If your harissa is particularly spicy or you prefer less heat, reduce the second addition of harissa.
cups medium couscous
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra to serve
01In a medium bowl, combine the couscous and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, rubbing with your fingers until coated. Stir in 1¼ cups of the water and ¼ teaspoon salt. Let stand for 15 minutes.
Made the NORTH AFRICAN CHICKEN COUSCOUS for tonight's dinner. Wow!! So, so good! My mom and grandparents are from Algeria, so couscous was a main at our house. This was a different version and I will definitely be making it again. Thanks so much!!