Couscous (pronounced “KOOS-koos”) is a dish made from tiny granules of durum wheat or semolina flour. The couscous grains are then prepared by steaming them until they have a light, fluffy consistency. It is often mistaken for a grain, but it is actually the same dough that is made into many pastas.
Eating couscous provides you with a good source of lean, vegetarian protein. A 1-cup serving of cooked couscous gives you 6 grams of protein, which meets 12 percent of the daily value for the nutrient. This whole-grain food is native to northern Africa and is commonly found in Middle Eastern cuisine.
Couscous is primarily carbohydrate, but it also contains significant amounts of other essential vitamins and minerals.
Preparing instant couscous is quick and easy — the dried couscous is added to a pot of boiling water or stock, the pot is then covered and the water is absorbed into the couscous in about five minutes.
Couscous is always steamed and never boiled. Couscous is cooked in a special kind of cooking ensemble called a kiskis, known by the French word couscousière in the West, except in Italy, where it is called a couscousiera. A kiskis consists of two parts: the bottom portion is a pot-bellied vessel for the broth while the top part fits snugly over the bottom part and has holes in its bottom for the steam to rise through, which cooks the couscous. In North Africa, they are often made of earthenware or aluminum. A makeshift couscousière can be made by placing a colander over a like-sized pot.
Cardiovascular Health: A single serving of couscous has more than 60% of the daily suggested intake of selenium. Selenium functions as a powerful antioxidant that functions mainly in the blood vessels to reduce the buildup of plaque and dangerous LDL cholesterol on artery and vein walls.
Wound Healing: . Protein is an integral part of wound healing, as well as in the metabolism of enzymes that aid in wound repair, both internally and externally. Couscous is a powerful part of any protein diet.
Weight Loss: If you are looking to lose weight, then in grains couscous is better. Couscous has 200 calories in each cup, which is less than 10% of the daily calorie intake suggested for adults and is also very low in sodium, cholesterol, and saturated fat.
Here is a easy recipe:
10-minute couscous salad
- 100g couscous
- 200ml hot low salt vegetable stock (from a cube is fine)
- 2 spring onion
- 1 red pepper
- ½ cucumber
- 50g feta cheese, cubed
- 2 tbsp pesto
- 2 tbsp toasted pine nut
Tip couscous into a large bowl, pour over stock. Cover, then leave for 10 mins, until fluffy and all the stock has been absorbed. Meanwhile, slice the onions and pepper and dice the cucumber. Add these to the couscous, fork through pesto, crumble in feta, then sprinkle over pine nuts to serve.
We found this great lunchbox filler recipe here.
Some people are allergic to various foods, so if you have never eaten sorghum or durum wheat, pay attention to your body’s reaction to make sure you don’t have any unexpected allergies.