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  Added: Apr 11, 2006  •  Visited (1698)  •  Print version Print this recipe (70)  •  eMail recipe eMail recipe  •  Write review  •  Not rated Rate this recipe
Steamed Couscous With Lamb, Vegetables And Raisins
What You Need:
  • 2 pounds couscous (see Glossary)
  • 2½ teaspoons salt dissolved in 2½ cups cold water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into bits
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 4 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
  • 2 pounds lean boneless lamb shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 large firm ripe tomatoes, quartered
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 stick cinnamon, broken in half
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh coriander (cilantro)
  • ¼ teaspoon crumbled saffron threads or ground saffron
  • 3 cups cold water
  • ½ pound (1 cup) dried chick-peas (garbanzos), soaked 12 hours, drained, rinsed and simmered in water to cover for 1 hour, then drained again, or substitute 2 cups drained canned chick-peas
  • 2 medium-sized carrots, cut in half lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 2-inch lengths
  • 2 small white turnips, peeled and cut into strips ¼ inch wide and 1 to 2 inches long
  • ½ pound sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 pound pumpkin, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • ½ cup seedless raisins
  • 1 pound zucchini, peeled and cut crosswise into 1-inch chunks

    How To Cook:
    1. Spread the couscous evenly in a large shallow pan. Sprinkle it with 2 cups of the salt water, then dribble the 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the top.

    2. Rub the moistened grains gently between your palms, lifting and dropping the couscous back into the pan, until the water and oil have been completely absorbed.

    3. Cover the pan with foil or plastic wrap and set the couscous aside at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes; the pellets will swell slightly.

    4. Meanwhile, in the lower part of a 4-quart couscoussier or in a deep 6-quart kettle or casserole, combine the 4 tablespoons of oil, the lamb, onion, tomatoes, salt, pepper, cinnamon sticks, parsley, coriander and saffron.

    5. Fry uncovered over high heat for about 5 minutes, turning the lamb chunks over with tongs until they are golden brown all over.

    6. Add 3 cups of water (or just enough to cover the meat) and the chick-peas, and stir until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to moderate.

    7. Set the top part of the couscoussier in place. Or set a colander lined with cheesecloth into the kettle or casserole; it should not touch the food in the pot.

    8. Twist damp paper towels or kitchen towels into long narrow strips and wrap them around the rim of the couscoussier or kettle to seal the joint between the upper and lower parts.

    9. Slowly add about 2 cups of the couscous to the upper pot or colander, rubbing the pellets between your palms as you drop them in and letting them mound naturally.

    10. When steam begins to rise through the pellets, add another cup or so of couscous in the same manner.

    11. Repeat, letting steam appear after each addition. When all the couscous has been rubbed into the pot, continue to steam uncovered and undisturbed for 20 minutes.

    12. Remove the top part of the couscoussier, return the couscous to the shallow pan again, spread it out with a wooden spoon, and set aside.

    13. Add the carrots, turnips, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and raisins to the stew and pour in just enough boiling water to cover the vegetables completely.

    14. Stirring constantly, bring back to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to moderate, set the top pot or colander in place again, and let the vegetables cook while you complete the preparation of the couscous.

    15. Sprinkle the remaining ½ cup of salt water, the butter bits and the powdered cinnamon over the couscous and rub the grains gently between your palms as before until the water and butter are completely absorbed.

    16. Again seal the joint at the rim of the pot with the towel strips. Slowly add 2 cups of the couscous to the top part of the pot or to the colander as you did before, rubbing the pellets between your palms as you drop them in, letting them mound naturally, and waiting for steam to appear before adding the rest, 1 cup at a time.

    17. Steam uncovered and undisturbed for about 15 minutes.Remove the top pot and, if the lamb, sweet potatoes and pumpkin are tender, transfer them from the bottom pot with a slotted spoon to a platter and cover with foil to keep them warm.

    18. Add the zucchini to the bottom pot. Replace the top and continue to steam the couscous is undisturbed for another 10 to 15 minutes, or until it is soft but still somewhat resistant to the bite.

    19. To serve, mound the couscous on a large heated platter. Return the meat and vegetables to the stew and cook over high heat for 2 or 3 minutes, until heated through.

    20. Taste for seasoning, then moisten the couscous with about 1 cup of the lamb sauce. With the back of a large spoon, make a round depression in the center of the couscous and drop in the vegetables and raisins.

    21. Arrange the meat in a ring around the couscous. Pour the remaining sauce into a bowl and present it separately. Serve at once.
    Serving Size: 6
     This recipe is also available in:
    Cuisine » Africa » Morocco
    Main Ingredient » Pasta
    Main Ingredient » Meat & Poultry » Lamb
    Main Ingredient » Meat & Poultry » Grape & Raisin
    Dish » Stew


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