Couscous has many versions according to country of origin (Tunisia, Morocco, Tripolן), like many other dishes. Like most regional recipes, evert household thinks it makes the most authentic and best-tasting version. Tunisians make a light-colored, fluffy, soft version (or at least at that’s how my mama always made it).
One of the hardest things after I found out I was Gluten-intolerant (in the dead of winter) was not being able to eat Couscous. A year later I met my friend Mari in a Gluten-free forum. When I visited her, she told me how she makes Couscous from ground rice! She even gave me her recipe.
As I don’t like changing childhood habits, I took Mari’s idea, but used mom’s tried and true recipe. The result was a taste of home, and even smelled like the real thing. Thank you Mari for the fantastic idea!
So, the recipe you see before you is for regular Couscous. For a healthier, Gluten-free version, just replace Semolina wheat with ground brown rice.
If you want a recipe for the soup that goes with it, you can go here. If you’d also like to serve it with a refreshing lemony salad, check out this recipe.
1 kg (2 pounds) Semolina wheat or, for a gluten-free version: finely-ground brown rice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp salt
3 1/2 cups water
Using your hands mix the Semolina wheat/ground rice with the salt and oil.
Drip in a 1/2 cup of water and incorporate using your hands.
Place in the Couscous pot’s steamer over a high flame (the bottom part should have boiling water in it), and cover with a folded towel.
When steam starts coming out, remove towel and drip in 1 cup of water. Restore towel and continue steaming for 1/2 an hour.
Remove from heat and sift.
Add 2 cups of water and set aside rest and soak for 1 hour.
Return to steam (covered with the towel) for an additional 1/2 an hour.
Remove from heat and sift again.