Monday, May 25, 2009
Spicy Chicken Couscous with Rose Harissa
Here's a lovely, and rather fiery, chicken couscous that I made on several occasions earlier this year. The chicken is first marinated in a yogurt-harissa mixture, then gently cooked in the same marinade, before mixed with couscous and some additional ingredients. It's got plenty of taste, good texture and it's definitely not dry - a problem I find with so many couscous dishes and couscous salads.
I used Belazu's Rose Harissa - a rather expensive, but very tasty British harissa paste available in deli shops. But I'm sure your regular harissa would work, too.
Spicy Chicken Cous-Cous with Rose Harissa
(Maitsev kanakuskuss harissaga)
500 g chicken breast or thigh fillets
200 g plain yogurt
1 heaped tsp Rose Harissa paste
300 ml water
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
250 g medium-grain couscous
2-3 Tbsp butter
250 g cherry tomatoes
handful of spring onions (white and light green parts only)
handful of fresh coriander/cilantro
Cut the chicken pieces into small strips (about an inch long and 1 cm wide). Fold harissa into the yogurt, then throw in the chicken pieces, stirring, so all chicken pieces are covered with marinade. Cover and place in the fridge for an hour.
Prepare the couscous. Heat the water, salt and oil in a saucepan. Remove from the heat and whisk in the couscous. Cover the saucepan and leave for 2-3 minutes. Return to the heat, add the butter and heat for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until the butter is melted. Remove from the heat and keep covered.
Take a small frying pan, add a splash of oil, rinsed cherry tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, until the cherry tomatoes are hot. Add to the prepared couscous and cover again. /No need to stir at this point/.
Take a large frying pan and dip in the chicken strips with the marinade. Heat over a moderate heat for 7-8 minutes, until chicken pieces are cooked through and the marinade hot. Pour over the couscous.
Stir the whole lot gently with a large spoon, then scatter chopped spring onions and coriander leaves on top.