Wednesday, July 30, 2014
From the looks of this blog...no posts for a while...you'd think we'd stopped eating of something. The truth is that I've almost stopped cooking. Having everything pulled out of your kitchen will lead to that. It's been almost two weeks and last night was the first time I really used the alternate kitchen that Sweetie created in my art studio.
We had both used the sink a few times for washing up, but lately we have been eating prepared foods. I cooked some things and put them in the freezer before the demolition, but we have also enjoyed Pasta King lasagna, bagged salads with tomatoes from the farm stand and similar foods. Steamed freshly picked green beans are possible using the microwave in the living room.
Yesterday I decided that the time had come to do some real cooking, but I still wanted to keep it simple. I used the toaster oven mid-day to bake some boneless, skinless chicken thighs. After cooling slightly, they went into the studio fridge. Closer to dinner time. I used the studio microwave to boil broth in a large glass measuring cup. I added a flavor packet from a package of couscous. That mixture was poured over a bowl of couscous from the package, covered and it sat for 5 minutes to allow the couscous to absorb the broth.
While the couscous was cooking, I cut up the chicken and basil, juiced the lemon and rounded up the pepper grinder. I had forgotten to get the feta from the fridge in the living room, so I added it once I went back in the house. All of the ingredients except the lemon zest (which I skipped...who knew where the zester had gotten to?) and feta were stirred into the fluffed couscous.
All that was left was to add the feta, heat some bread and serve it up.
Sweetie has always loved this recipe and was thrilled to have a home cooked meal that was this delicious. Tomorrow we may be back to bagged salad to use up the rest of the chicken, but I'll bet I'll be cooking in the alternate kitchen the next day. I'll try to post what I cook, but the next few days are full of flooring work and wall painting, so who knows if I'll have the energy. I do love to paint walls, but it does tire me out.
Hope you make this dish. It is a lovely meal for a summer day with bright, fresh flavors and it's easy, too.
Mediterranean Chicken Couscous
Serves 8 (more if part of a buffet or potluck)
1 1/4 cups low-sodium fat-free chicken broth
1 (5.6 oz.) package toasted pine nut couscous mix
3 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 (4 oz.) package crumbled feta cheese (I used about half that amount)
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (optional)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Garnish: fresh basil leaves
(Note: Substitute 3-4 teaspoons (I used 3) dried basil if you can't get fresh. 3 cups of leftover cooked chicken or turkey in large dice works fine, too.)
Microwave chicken broth and seasoning packet from couscous package at HIGH for 3-5 minutes or until broth begins to boil. Place couscous in a large bowl, and stir in broth mixture. Cover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff couscous with a fork, stir in chicken and next 6 ingredients. Serve warm or cold. Garnish with fresh basil leaves or a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts, if desired.