This is my own Moroccan-themed recipe so while it may not be an authentic dish, it is delicious all the same. In our house we'll often have it as an accompaniment to pitta with grilled or fried halloumi cheese, salad and lemon wedges (see picture). It would also make a perfect accompaniment to grilled meats or fish.
Ingredients: 200g cous cous
2 tomatoes, peeled, de-seeded, finely chopped (no juice) 1 red pepper, very finely chopped 1 red onion, very finely chopped 1 red chilli (or according to taste), seeds removed, very finely chopped 1-2 teaspoon ras el hanout* according to taste Small bunch of parsley (or coriander or mint if you prefer), chopped Olive oil
I find the best way to peel tomatoes is to immerse them in boiled water for a couple of minutes, then the skin slips off easily. I should stress the need to sluice off any excess water after dicing the tomatoes, the idea is to add moisture to the dish but without it leeching into the cous cous and making it soggy.
Put the cous cous in a pan with 250ml of freshly boiled water and a glug of olive oil and stir with a fork. Place a lid on the pan and leave for 4 minutes. Then, scooping a knob of butter onto the fork, use it to separate the grains until fluffy.
Meanwhile, in a frying pan, add a glug of olive oil and fry the red onion and red pepper over a low to medium heat until soft but not brown. Add the chilli and the ras el hanout for the last couple of minutes.
Combine the cous cous, fried veg, tomatoes and fresh herbs thoroughly and serve warm.
* For those unfamiliar, ras el hanout is the Moroccan equivalent of Garam Masala. It is a spice mélange meaning literally 'top of the shop' (i.e. the best of the spices). Traditionally each shop would have its own carefully guarded recipe. The recipe can therefore vary but usually contains cardamom, clove, cinnamon, ground chilli peppers, coriander, cumin, nutmeg, peppercorn, turmeric and even lavender. It's not always available in supermarkets but delicatessens and whole food shops may stock it. Alternatively make your own blend.