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Little pearls, big taste

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Pearls of infinite flavour
I forget now where I first read about Israeli couscous, but ever since then, I've wanted to get some. I didn't make a serious effort to go looking for it, but out of the blue, I see it on the shelves at my local neighbourhood grocery store! Compared to semolina couscous, which we're probably more familiar with over here in Malaysia, these pearls cost almost five times more. But I couldn't resist.

(As an aside, anyone who knows a little bit about Malaysia's foreign policy will understand why anything with "Israeli" attached to it may not be publicised!)

I made a salad with the couscous. It contained chickpeas fried with chilli flakes, cubes of grilled eggplant, orange pepper/capsicum, cucumber, red chillies, and loads of fresh mint. The dressing was a vinaigrette of balsamic vinegar, honey and olive oil -- nothing fancy. I thought the grilled eggplant was a standout ingredient and there should be plenty of that as well as the mint, which, for me, is a must in every fresh salad.

I didn't use a recipe, but if you need one, here are some that I looked up: 

Israeli Couscous with Mixed Mushrooms by Ruth Reichl
Chicken and Israeli Couscous with Tomato and Lemon from The Bitten Word (taken from Martha Stewart Living)
Israeli Couscous with Caramelised Onion, Eggplant and Feta from Nibbledish

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