pearls of wisdom

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress

Categories: Grains and Pasta, Veggies and Sides, Supper, Dinner Party, Sources, Fête Fact, Posted on February 27, 2016 by Sandy Bergsten

Want to whip up something extraordinary in no time flat? Simply toss some out of the ordinary ingredients together to create a dish that is sure to impress.

If you’ve never tried Israeli couscous you are missing out. Sometimes called pearl couscous or ptitm, these small, round, pasta-like granules are made from semolina and wheat flour.

Unlike the typical small, dried, yellow couscous Israeli couscous is twice as big and toasted to give it a nutty flavor and chewy bite.

To boost the flavor quotient I simmer my Israeli couscous in chicken broth instead of water, making it irresistibly risotto-esque.

To propel this dish even further I swirl in a generous spoonful of truffle butter and top each serving with a smattering of sautéed wild mushrooms. Here’s how you can make truffled couscous at home.

In a medium saucepan bring the chicken broth to a boil along with a pinch of salt. Stir in the Israeli couscous.

Cover, reduce the heat and simmer the couscous for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally until just cooked through.

Remove from the heat and stir in two generous tablespoons of truffle butter. The couscous can be made ahead to this point. Cool completely then cover and refrigerate. Carefully rewarm on the stovetop over low heat or in the microwave on 50% power, stir frequently.

For the mushrooms- slice both cremini and shitake mushrooms.

Sauté in unsalted butter over medium heat.

Once the mushrooms throw off their water continue cooking, stirring occasionally until they begin to sear.

The mushrooms can be done in advance, cool completely, cover and refrigerate. Rewarm on the stove or in the microwave on 50% power.

To serve top a large spoonful of truffled couscous with a generous pinch of wild mushrooms. Truly a bite of heaven!

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