Pearled Couscous and Lamb Shoulder

Pearled couscous, because it is a toasted pasta, has a firm texture on the outside and a smoother texture on the inside. It is round and about 3/16 of an inch in diameter. It is made from semolina flour.  It is high in fiber and has a low glycemic index.  It is on the bland side, but works well with many vegetable and herb combinations. I find it attractive on the plate.

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Pearled couscous topped with a grilled lamb shoulder chop has it all, color, texture and flavor!

My niece with the great vegetable garden shared some Asian eggplant with me the other evening.  That started the ball rolling for a pearled couscous mix.  First, I made a brunoise of onion and red and green bell peppers. I halved the eggplant and sliced it into 1/2 inch half moons – then I got to cooking.  First I sweated the onions until tender and picking up a little color, then I added the peppers and eggplant and softened them.  I added a tablespoon of water at a time to steam and soften the peppers and eggplant.  When the eggplant was about half tender, I removed the veggies from the pot, heated it dry, added a little splash of oil, put the couscous in the pot and browned it a bit.  The vegetables went back in with the couscous and I added chicken broth and cooked it until the veggies were done and the couscous had absorbed all the liquid.  A little salt and pepper brought out all the flavors in the pot.

While the couscous and veggies rested, I grilled a couple of lamb shoulder chops.  Shoulder chops are usually the best priced cut of lamb.  I use a little olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder and dried oregano on my chops.  Sometimes I rub them with lemon juice and oregano for another layer of flavor.

When the chops were done to a nice medium rare, I plated the couscous and topped it with a chop.  It tasted as good as it looks.

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