Pearl couscous is also known as Jumbo couscous, Giant couscous, Moghrabiah, Israeli couscous; and/or Jerusalem couscous. It should not be confused with the traditional semolina couscous. Pearl couscous as the name suggests are round beads or tiny balls. Unlike traditional couscous, pearl couscous is made from baked wheat rather than semolina. It is very similar to pasta in that it holds it shape and texture. Whilst eating it reminded me of orzo, a rice shaped pasta. This Beetroot Salad was amazing to look at; and certainly had the Wow factor, but the taste was a bit of a let down.
I struggled for years to find Mograbiah or Pearl couscous, so if you can't find any, it can easily be replaced with traditional North African couscous that are readily available in most supermarkets and health shops.
I am submitting this to Presto Pasta Nights #212. For those of you who are new to Presto Pasta Nights, or PPN as it is fondly known was founded by Ruth Daniels of Once Upon a Feast and each Friday night a different host posts a roundup of pasta dishes submitted by bloggers from around the world.Balsamic-roasted beetroot with winter greens and Pearl couscous
Serves 4 or 6 – 8 as a side dish
500g beetroot, peeled and chopped into even size cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
Salt to taste
Handful of shredded winter greens
200g pearl couscous
For the dressing
Juice 1 lemon
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Optional: cubes of feta cheese
Preheat oven to gas mark 7. Put the beetroot in a roasting tin with the oil, vinegar, garlic and salt to taste. Mix well and cover the tine with foil. Roast for 45 minutes or until tender.
Whilst the beetroot is roasting, in a large bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients. Set aside. Then boil some water in a pan, when boiling add the pearl couscous and cook like pasta until al dente. Drain and stir into the dressing and set aside.
In another pan, either steam or boil the winter greens, when tender. Drain and stir into the pearl couscous. When the beetroot is roasted, stir into the couscous along with any roasting juice, stir well and allow to stand for about 30 minutes (the longer the better) to allow the colour and flavours to mingle. Serve topped with optional feta cheese cubes.