Israeli Couscous is a larger non-instant form of couscous. It is often found hidden in the ethnic or Kosher section of grocery stores (if at all). It is fantastic prepared as a pilaf, risotto or used in soups. It is pasta, so it works well being simmered in boiling liquids and it cooks fast as well – in about 20 minutes from box to plate.
I used what I had in the cupboard, feel free to substitute away. For example, use prepared beef stock instead or any vegetables you like.
Most of the items I used were from Trader Joe’s (the stock concentrate, roast beef, couscous, etc). I used dried vegetables that I re-hydrated first in boiling water, drained and then sauteed. To do this, use 1/3 cup dry of the carrots and as well the onions, covering with 2/3 cup water each. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes and proceed.
Beef & Veggie Israeli Couscous Soup
6 cups boiling water
6 packs lower sodium beef stock concentrate
3/4 cup diced carrots
3/4 cup diced onion
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp dried spinach (or a big handful fresh)
1 12-ounce can roast beef, well drained
8-ounces Israeli couscous
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp diced dried garlic (2 cloves fresh)
1/4 tsp crushed dried thyme
Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add in 1 Tbsp of the oil with the carrots and onion. Cook till tender. Drizzle in the last Tablespoon of oil, then the couscous. Cook for 5 minutes stirring often.
Add in the boiling water slowly, then the broth concentrates. Add the garlic, thyme and balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes.
The soup will be very thick – more a stew. If you like a thin soup with plenty of broth use 8 cups at the start.
Season to taste with more balsamic vinegar, ground black pepper and salt.