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Israeli Couscous with Shallot and Parsley

For the next high fiber recipe, Minoo introduced to us Israeli couscous. Israeli couscous, also known as ptitim or Jerusalem couscous is a wheat-based baked pasta in the shape of round pearls.

The pearly Israeli couscous is generally considered as a food for children. It is often served as a side dish with a main dish of meat. Minoo served this as a side dish to the Chicken Paprika.

Minoo also shared with us a list of high fiber food as follows:

Grain Products

  • Whole grain breads (such as 100% whole wheat, whole grain rye, mixed grain, or cracked wheat), buns, pitas, wraps, bagels, and muffins
  • Whole wheat or graham crackers
  • Brown rice
  • Whole-wheat pasta or brown rice pasta
  • Cereals made from whole grain (whole wheat, bran, or whole grain oats)
  • Oatmeal and other whole grain cooked cereals

Another great way to add more fiber to your diet is to add ground flax, wheat germ, or wheat bran in your baked goods. You should aim for six to eleven servings of grain products in your diet every day.

Vegetables

Eat a wide variety of vegetables and you will increase your fiber intake enormously, as well as improve your overall health in a number of ways. However, dark, leafy green vegetables contain the highest amounts of fiber. These beneficial veggies include:

  • Broccoli
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Green peas
  • Green beans
  • Artichokes
  • Brussel sprout
  • Turnip greens

Try to include green vegetables in your diet more often, at least three to five servings daily. Starchy vegetables such as potatoes are lower in fiber content however.

Fruit

Many fruits are also high in fiber and, therefore, should be added to your list of high fiber foods. Some of the best choices include:

  • Berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries)
  • Dried fruits (dates, prunes, apricots, figs, and raisins)
  • Apples (with the skin), oranges, pears, and peaches

It is best to select fresh, raw fruit to receive the most nutrients, including fiber. Include two to three servings of fruit in your diet every day.

Legumes, Nuts, and Seeds

Legumes, nuts, and seeds are another important addition to your list of high fiber foods. You should try:

Fresh, dried or frozen peas, beans (black beans, lima beans, kidney beans, baked beans), lentils, and other legumes

  • Almonds
  • Acorns
  • Walnuts
  • Soy nuts
  • Peanuts
  • Pecans
  • Cashews
  • Pistachio nuts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Sunflower seeds

Keep in mind nuts and seeds (preferably unsalted) should be eaten only as occasional snacks, particularly when you want to limit your fat intake.

Ingredients

  • salt and ground pepper
  • 1 cup Israeli (pearl) couscous
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 shallots halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 Onions sliced and caramelized
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Source: this recipe is adapted from Martha Stewart

Serves 4

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Multigrain Salad

Following the knife skills workshop, Ian proceeded with a grain workshop.

In this workshop, Ian introduced us to four grains, i.e. Couscous, Bulgar, Quinoa and Kasha. Ian showed us how to cook the different grains and we got to taste the texture of all the grains which is lightly dressed with olive oil and salt. Most of the grains can be cooked like pasta but the nutrients will be lost in the water. So, if you cook it the pasta way, save the water to make stocks.

A good place to buy such grains is Galloway’s Specialty Foods.

The grains are used along with some fresh vegetables, herbs, seeds and dried fruits to create a healthy multigrain salad.

The above are some of the vegetables and herbs that were prepared from the knife skills workshop.

Couscous is the easiest and quickest to prepare among the 4 grains. All you have to do is … More on following page. Click here to continue reading

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Turkish Couscous

Couscous is a traditional staple of North Africa. It is also popular in parts of the Middle East. Jorge made a Turkish Couscous to complement the Pan Roasted Cilantro-Mint Marinated Chicken Thighs.

Couscous is a grain dish made by rolling and shaping moistened semolina wheat and coating them with finely ground wheat flour. This is a great substitute for rice. It cooks very quickly.

Ingredients

  • 5 cups quick couscous
  • 5 cups water or stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups cooked peas
  • 2 cups raisins or dried cranberries (soaked and drained)
  • 1 mango (optional)
  • salt and pepper


Source: Jorge Viduenez

Prep time: 20 minutes;  Cook time: 20 minutes;  Yield 12 servings

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Quick Curried Couscous

The South Arm Community Kitchen meets again with the leadership of Minoo.  We enjoyed meeting one another after a long summer break.  We shared our summer stories while preparing and enjoying the food.

Minoo prepared three recipes for the first meeting.  The first recipe is a Quick Curried Couscous.  Couscous is a staple food of North Africa like Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Western Libya.

Quick Curried Couscous with raisins and almonds

This Quick Curried Couscous is easy and quick to prepare.  The couscous we found in Western supermarkets is the instant type, i.e. the couscous have been pre-steamed and dried and only needs a small amount of boiling water or stock to rehydrate the couscous, covered tightly for 10 minutes.  The couscous will swells  and ready to be fluffed and served.  It’s preparation time is shorter than dried pasta or dried grain like rice.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups couscous
  • 3 cups chicken stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 bunch parsley or cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup of almond slices or slivered almonds

Quick-Curried-Couscous-10

This recipe serves 6.

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Middle Eastern Flavour Pork, Chickpea and Couscous Casserole

Andrea made this Middle Eastern Pork, Chickpea and Couscous Casserole as her second dish in the South Arm Community Kitchen.

This is a one-pot party dish which features easy-to-use couscous and nutrient-packed chickpeas. This dish is highlighted by the rich flavours of cumin, coriander and zesty orange.

Middle Eastern Pork, Chickpea and Couscous Casserole

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/4 lb lean boneless pork loin or pork tenderloin, cut in thin strips
  • 2 cups sliced carrots
  • 1 large sweet green or red pepper, diced
  • 1 large onion, cut in wedges
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh gingerroot
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 can (19oz/540ml) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange rind
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 dried cranberries or raisins
  • 1 piece of leek, cut in thin strips
  • 1 1/2 cup couscous
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander or parsley

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Click on the link below for the instructions.

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