Summer sides almost always include a mayonnaise or oil-based dressing, and usually some type of macaroni. Well that is easy to change and still have a side-dish that is easy, tasty, and a hit with everyone. The nice thing about couscous as a side in warm weather is that it doesn’t need to be refrigerated and is served at room temperature. I like this made with dried mango, but you can use any type of dried fruit, even cranberries or raisins. Dried lemon peel or orange is really good too. The hint of mint adds a refreshing element to each bite. You can whip this up in no time and everyone will think you fussed. No need to tell them anything different: I won’t tell if you don’t!
3 cups dry couscous
3 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1/4 cup dry white wine or water
2/3 cups frozen peas that you have thawed. Fresh peas work great.
1/2 cup dried fruit
1 teaspoon celery salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped mint or parsley leaves
In a large bowl in the microwave heat the stock until you reach a slow simmer. Stir in the couscous and all the remaining ingredients except the mint. Stir very briefly and very quickly. It may not be well-mixed at this point. That’s okay. Seal the bowl with plastic wrap tightly. Allow to set untouched for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes remove plastic wrap, add the mint and fluff with a fork. Enjoy now or chill for later use.