A fabulous way to prepare couscous - everyone loves the crunchy burnt bits!
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Servings: 4- 6
Author: Nagi | RecipeTin Eats
1tspvegetable stock powder (or chicken stock powder, or just salt)
1brown onion, diced
2medium tomatoes, diced (about 1 1/4 cups) (see notes)
Handful coriander or parsley leaves (optional)
Fresh black pepper
Combine couscous, stock powder (or salt) and water. Cover with cling wrap and put aside for 10 minutes, then fluff with a fork.
Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a pan about 20cm wide over medium heat.
Add the onion and sauté until translucent and soft, but not browned - about 3 to 5 minutes.
Add tomato paste and sugar and stir for 1 minute.
Add the diced tomatoes, salt and black pepper and cook for 3 minutes.
Combine the tomato mixture and couscous, and mix well.
Wipe the pan (you don't need to clean it thoroughly), then heat the remaining 2tbsp olive oil over medium heat.
Add the couscous mixture, using the back of a spoon to press the mixture firmly and evenly into the pan. The firmer you press it in, the better it will hold together.
Cover (even with a lid for a larger pot is fine) and leave for 10 minutes.
Remove from heat, loosen the edges slightly with a knife, put a plate on top, say a prayer, then flip quickly to invert the couscous pancake onto a plate with the crispy side up.
Serve warm while it is nice and crispy!
1. You can substitute the fresh tomatoes with tinned tomatoes, but you will need to use diced or whole ones and dice them yourself. Do not use crushed or pureed tomato, there is too much liquid and the couscous will end up soggy. 2. Couscous is normally made with a 1:1 couscous water ratio, but with this dish, it is reduced slightly because the couscous continues to cook and absorb liquid when it is in the pan. 3. I served this with a simple zucchini and fennel salad - ribbons of zucchini (using a potato peeler), shaved fennel (using a mandolin) dressed with a squeeze of lemon and olive oil. Sprinkle it with fennel fronds and season with salt and pepper. It is a refreshing combination with the warm, hearty couscous pancake! 4. Reheat in the oven in order to make the top crispy again (if you do it in a microwave, it will just go soggy)