Serves a Crowd

Pearl Couscous with Slow Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Parsley, Olives and Mint

January  6, 2010
2 Ratings
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

In the summer the tendency is to focus on produce and other fresh foods that are so plentiful. But, in doing so, we often neglect our pantry ingredients - the backbone for many meals. A box of Israeli couscous sitting on the shelf inspired us to make an old standby. Unlike North African couscous that is tiny and yellow, Israeli couscous (sometimes called pearl couscous or maftoul) resembles barley or very small peas. Made of semolina pasta (not a grain), it is toasted in an open flame oven, rather than dried like most pasta. Toasting gives it a nutty flavor and a sturdy composition. It is incredibly versatile and delicious. Try finding it at small specialty stores, Whole Foods or Trader Joes. We have made this recipe again and again. Feel free to play with proportions. The slow roasted tomatoes are delicious on their own as a side or tossed with salad. —Loulies

What You'll Need
  • 2 pints red grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for roasting
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3 cups Israeli pearl couscous
  • 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced in half
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Cut tomatoes in half, coat with olive oil and arrange, cut sides up on a baking sheet. Add one garlic clove and roast until tomatoes are slightly shriveled around edges, about 35-45 minutes. Let cool on baking sheet before you try to remove them.
  2. Puree in a blender, 1 small clove of garlic, 1/4 c. olive oil, 1/4 c. water, 2 tsp. lemon juice, salt, pepper, and a few of the roasted tomatoes until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Heat 2 Tbls olive oil to large heavy sauce pan and add couscous. Stir until couscous browns slightly. Add chicken or vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered until just tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Cover pan and remove from heat. Let stand 15 minutes.
  4. Place couscous in a bowl and stir in pureed dressing, remaining roasted tomatoes, olives, parsley, mint. Taste. Add salt and pepper if needed.
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1 Review

newbiecook January 7, 2010
You clearly adapted this from Gourmet 2002 recipe... as displayed on Epicurious

I noticed you were starting to reference your sources... that is always a good idea! It hurts the integrity of this site (and your own) if you dont! please keep up the good work and note your sources of inspiration! Dont forget - youre entering in a contest where the winner will be used in a cookbook (you already won one where the recipe was adapted from another but you didnt cite it) - you dont want to get in trouble for not giving the proper credit to those that deserve it! all the best...