Rice and pasta are kitchen staples I can’t live without. And now, thanks to Blu and the team at Haystac, I can add Pearl Couscous (also known as Israeli couscous) to my list of must-have versatile ingredients.

You can win 1 of 5 packs of Blu Gourmet Pearl Couscous to trial in your very own kitchen. Keep reading to find out how!
Peal couscous takes its name from its unique pearl-like shape and size. They’re around 3mm in size and made from hard wheat toasted in an open flame oven, which gives them a rich, nutty flavour and a smooth texture -perfect for absorbing sauces, stocks and spices!

I put these to the test and made both a savoury and a sweet dish.

Smoked cod and fennel soup with pearl couscous
Serves 4
Print
317 calories
40 g
30 g
11 g
17 g
3 g
632 g
630 g
4 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
632g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 317
Calories from Fat 94
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11g
16%
Saturated Fat 3g
16%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 30mg
10%
Sodium 630mg
26%
Total Carbohydrates 40g
13%
Dietary Fiber 6g
25%
Sugars 4g
Protein 17g
Vitamin A
28%
Vitamin C
41%
Calcium
15%
Iron
26%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 small fennel bulb
  2. 1 tablespoon butter
  3. 1 small leek, rinsed and finely sliced
  4. 3 ripe tomatoes, finely chopped
  5. 1 litre fish stock
  6. ½ litre water
  7. 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  8. 4x 100g smoked cod fillets
  9. 4 tablespoons aioli
  10. 10 basil leaves, roughly torn
  11. ¾ cup Blu Gourmet Pearl Couscous
Instructions
  1. Trim the fennel bulb, reserving the feathery tops, then cut the bulb in half and finely slice it.
  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, add the leek and cook until soft, then add the tomato, sliced fennel and stock. Bring to the boil, add remaining water then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the lemon juice and fish and cover. Cook for 7 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through.
  3. Lift out the fish and add the pearl couscous, stir well and simmer for a further 8 minutes.
  4. Add fish back in and simmer for a few minutes. Divide among four warmed pasta bowls. Ladle the broth over the fish and top with a spoonful of aioli. Garnish with the fennel tops and basil.
  5. Smoked cod and fennel soup with pearl couscous
beta
calories
317
fat
11g
protein
17g
carbs
40g
more
Adapted from Marie Claire Comfort
I Ate My Way Through http://www.iatemywaythrough.com/
I love the simple flavours in this soup. It is almost a bouillabaisse but not as rich. The broth tastes delicate and light and the best thing about this recipe is that the pearl couscous makes it a meal!

I also wanted to play around with spices so poached a cup of pearl couscous in a divine syrup of fruit juices, lemon rind, cinnamon sticks, star anise, vanilla bean and honey, and then once chilled, I mixed it with some fresh strawberries and blueberries. The result was a sublime fruity dessert.

Sweet pearl couscous with berries and vanilla bean ice-cream
Serves 4
Print
334 calories
74 g
3 g
2 g
6 g
1 g
434 g
18 g
35 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
434g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 334
Calories from Fat 14
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g
3%
Saturated Fat 1g
4%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 3mg
1%
Sodium 18mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 74g
25%
Dietary Fiber 4g
17%
Sugars 35g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
4%
Vitamin C
67%
Calcium
6%
Iron
5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. Juice of 2 oranges
  2. Juice of 4 apples
  3. 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  4. 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  5. 1 teaspoon butter
  6. 2 - 4 teaspoons honey, to taste
  7. 1 cup of Blu Gourmet Pearl Couscous
  8. 2 whole star anise
  9. 2 cinnamon sticks
  10. 1 vanilla bean, split
  11. water, as required
  12. Handful berries, according to personal taste
  13. 4 scoops vanilla bean icecream
Instructions
  1. Sweet pearl couscous with berries, icecream and pineapple jerky
  2. Combine the juices, zest, honey, butter, star anise, cinnamon and vanilla bean in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook and stir every few minutes until honey has dissolved.
  3. Bring to the boil, then add the pearl couscous.
  4. Simmer for 6 minutes and add water if necessary.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and cover with a lid. Allow the couscous to remain covered until cool; fluff with a fork occasionally.
  6. Remove spices and mix through berries (I've used quartered strawberries and whole blueberries). Serve chilled with a scoop of ice-cream.
  7. I've served these with a slice of pineapple jerky as well, as I've been slightly obsessed with my fruit dehydrator lately... more to come on that shortly
beta
calories
334
fat
2g
protein
6g
carbs
74g
more
I Ate My Way Through http://www.iatemywaythrough.com/

uncooked pearl couscous
Blu Gourmet Pearl Couscous

Win 1 of 5 packs of Blu Gourmet Pearl Couscous
To enter, simply leave a comment below in 25 words or less and tell me what you would use pearl couscous for?

Sorry, for Australian residents only. Competition entry closes on 8/12/09 11:59pm; winners will be announced on 9/12/09. Please use a valid email address so you can be contacted for your mailing address, shall you win.
Good luck and happy eating! x
For more information on pearl couscous, visit Blu’s official website.

THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED.

Congratulations to KT, Katherine, Anita, Bri and Mooksy!
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Jennifer is the founding blogger of I Ate My Way Through (originally, Jenius.com.au). Growing up in the multicultural melting pot of Sydney’s Inner West as a second generation Australian (of Vietnamese refugee parents of Teochew Chinese ancestry), Jen has always had a deep curiosity about global cuisines, culinary heritage and the cultural assimilation of immigrants. For Jen and her family, food is always at the centre of all celebrations, life events and milestones. A lover of the finer things in life, as well as cheap eats, her blogging ethos is all about empowering and inspiring people to expand their culinary repertoire. When not running her two companies (she is also the Managing Director of The Bamboo Garden online marketing agency), Jen can be found exploring old-world charms at vintage markets and delving into local eats around the world. She has a weakness for fried chicken.
11 comments
Deloras Easterwood
Deloras Easterwood

A nice recpe idea you have here. I am always looking for more ideas to keep the kids entertained with and this one might just do the trick so thank you for sharing it.

harcout breton
harcout breton

Definitely eat, I like you use some vanilla beans in your recipe. Everything looks perfect.

Mooksy
Mooksy

I'd use the pearl couscous in a Asian Spicy lamb stir fry

Renault
Renault

Given that its now turned to summery weather, a refreshing couscous salad!

Bri
Bri

I'd try both your sweet recipe, and this one. Both sound fantastic!

Anita @ no red meat
Anita @ no red meat

I'd use it to make the Seafood tagine from Valli Little's 'Faking It'.

betty
betty

the sweet pearl cous cous sounds awesome! i have a packet at home i've had it for months & keep forgetting abt it. will try the deessert recipe out thanks Jen!

Katherine Ryan
Katherine Ryan

I'd use it alongside a Moroccan style stew, heavily spiced and with plenty of juices to soak into the couscous. I think I'd stir a little chopped mint and preserved lemon through the couscous too, and I'd serve the stew on top of it for maximum flavour absorption.

KT
KT

Hi Jen, I'd use the pearl couscous for an amazing recipe that David Lebovitz posted on his blog recently (Israeli couscous with butternut squash and preserved lemon).

barbara
barbara

Great recipes. I like the idea of using it as a dessert.I made a quick risotto with some last week. I'll link to your post when I get around to posting mine.