Couscous Peperoncino

This is an Italian recipe that I learned about while I was in Japan. Most of their versions of Italian food I found to be incredibly hilarious, such as pasta with a ketchup ragu sauce topped with a raw egg. But this one was actually pleasant. I used to buy packets of the sauce mix while I was living there, but when I moved back I found them to be overly expensive. So I went to the store, found a packet, read the ingredients, and made my own version. Being cheap and poor has had the positive side-effect of forcing me to be a good cook.

This recipe is both spicy and fresh tasting. It would go well as a side dish with meat or fish, or is good as a lunch. The garlic is very subtle. You taste more of the spicy hotness from the peppers, which is slightly tamed by the parsley.

When I make this I used dried chili peppers from Asian markets, and I usually buy them pre-chopped into little rounds. You can always buy whole dried chili peppers and chop them yourself. Those are probably at regular stores, but I never really checked.

I also prefer whole wheat couscous because it’s got an extra bit of flavor that is slightly nutty. This recipe can be made with pretty much any type of grain., I just like couscous the best for this.

This recipe also only takes about a total of 10 minutes to prepare and cook. It’s kind of awesome like that.

Ingredients:

1 cup water
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup couscous
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. dried chili peppers, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 Tbsp. olive oil

Prepare the couscous with the butter and salt according to the box directions.

Heat olive oil in a pan, and sauté garlic and pepper over low heat until the garlic just starts to begin browning. Do not burn!

Add cooked couscous and stir, making sure to coat it with the oil.

Add parsley, mix, and remove from heat.

Best if served with a little bit of grated pecorino romano cheese.