late last fall, while perusing the public market, i impulse bought a pound of pearl - or israeli - couscous. like most things i impulse buy, i didn't have any plans for it, so i quickly grabbed it and went on my merry way through the rest of the market. it made it's way into my pasta cupboard, where it sat for the next six months. until jason asked suggested it for dinner.
which sounded easy enough, but i always have a hard time choosing something to make with a new ingredient. there are always too many good choices! this time i found salads upon salads and moroccan dish after moroccan dish - which i skipped, since if i really want moroccan food, i'd ask my moroccan friend to make it for me, rather than try to attempt a dish he's mastered - and none of them grabbed me. sure, they all looked good, just not great. until i hit the jackpot: martha stewart's couscous with chicken, tomatoes, and lemon. blogger after blogger praised this recipe - and the importance of finishing it with fresh lemon. and they are absolutely right. this dinner is the perfect one pot meal - chicken, vegetables, pasta, and that squirt of lemon. it's simple and delicious.
adapted from martha stewart living
45 minutes, serves 4 to 6
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
2 small onions, thinly sliced
2 pounds grape tomatoes
6 garlic cloves, minced
8 strips lemon peel
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups chicken stock
2 cups pearl or Israeli couscous
2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 lemon cut into wedges for serving (use the lemon you peeled)
- heat a large skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat and coat the bottom with olive oil. cook the chicken until browned, about three minutes per side. transfer to a plate and return the pan to the stove.
- reduce the heat to medium and add the onion. cook, stirring frequently, about three minutes or just until the onion is starting to soften. stir in the tomatoes, garlic, and lemon peel. cook for a few minutes, until the tomatoes start to soften.
- return the chicken to the skillet, add the wine and cook for about 4 minutes, or until most of the wine has evaporated. add the stock and couscous and stir. reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the couscous is tender and the chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes.
- stir in the peas and cook another couple minutes until heated through. serve with lemon.