I think one of the handiest tools in a busy parent’s pantry has got to be couscous. Couscous is a very small bead shaped pasta that can be cooked without boiling, you just simply pour a very hot liquid over it, cover it and in about 5 minutes, it is ready to go.
In recent years, it has become easier to find whole wheat couscous, which is just as easy to prepare, but with the benefit of whole grains.
On busy days when I need a quick side, I often reach for couscous. What’s even better is that you can easily add a few components to make this quick dish go from pretty good to “wow!” One of my favorite ways to up the flavor profile of couscous is to add a bit of citrus, nut or dried fruit. These easy mix-ins can be altered to your family’s taste.
Lemon Pistachio Couscous
1 cup broth (chicken, vegetable or beef are all fine) or water
2 tablespoon olive oil, divided use
3/4 cup whole wheat couscous
¼ cup chopped roasted and salted pistachios
zest of one lemon
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
fresh parsley (optional)
In a medium microwave-safe bowl, pour the broth and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Cook on HIGH for 3-4 minutes or until the broth begins to boil. Remove from the microwave.
Immediately add the couscous and cover tightly. Let sit for 5-7 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop the pistachios and prepare the lemon zest and lemon juice.
Uncover the couscous and mix in the pistachios and lemon zest and juice. Add the additional 1 tablespoon of olive oil, pepper and parsley, if using.