The Recipe: Couscous all dressed up for summer, quick to make and studded with bites of fresh mango and perfectly ripe summer tomatoes. Vegan and beautiful on a platter.
The Conversation: Shall we talk about what "recipe words" stop us in our tracks, send us straight to the kitchen? I share mine, won't you share yours, too? I'd love to hear what compels you to the kitchen!
Do certain recipe words stop you like roadblocks?
My work-block words are so many, they need categories! World cuisines such as Moroccan and Greek, anything Finnish or Swedish or Nordic. And Canadian, of course, Canadian!
Hints at origin ("traditional" or "authentic") and seasonality ( “summer” and “winter”). Savory.
And then there’s an endless list of favorite ingredients. Blueberries, buttermilk, sour cherries, almost anything with lemon. Beets, of course! Mangos are high on the list too. These days I buy more mangoes in a month than I once did in an entire decade. Most go into smoothies and a summer version of my daily Quick 'n' Easy Raw Salad.
What’s not on the list? Couscous! I do love saying the word out loud, though, doesn’t it just make us laugh? You should hear the three-year old twins learn the word, peering into the bowl to see what I’m making. "Koos-koos, koos-koos", they practice, and I laugh again. Besides, time-wise, couscous deserves serious attention since it cooks way faster than traditional pasta or rice.
Every so often, a word in a recipe stops me in my tracks, willing me to move straight to the kitchen. “Mango Couscous” did that to me last summer. It makes up in minutes and is a great backdrop to grilled chicken or Fast Roast Chicken, I think it would be gobbled up in a potluck too.
with MANGO & TOMATO
Time to table: 20 minutes
Makes 5 cups
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1 cup whole-wheat couscous
MANGO & TOMATO
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 jalapeño chile, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 mango, peeled and cubed
- 1/4 cup dried currants
- 1 ripe tomato, chopped
- Juice of a lime, about 1 tablespoon
- Small tomatoes, halved, optional
- 1 lime, cut in wedges, optional
COUSCOUS In a saucepan, bring water, butter and salt to a boil. Stir in couscous, remove from heat and let rest for 10 minutes, fluffing occasionally.
MANGO & TOMATO In a skillet, heat olive oil until shimmery. Stir in jalapeño and garlic, let gently sauté for a minute or two. Stir in mango and currants, let cook just until mango is beginning to soften.
COMBINE Stir cooked mango mixture into couscous, add tomato and sprinkle with lime juice.
TO SERVE Serve warm or at room temperature, with lime wedges on the side for an extra douse.
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