Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘couscous’

What To Do With CousCous

Posted by terrepruitt on August 26, 2016

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitWhat do you do with couscous?  I like couscous.  One time when I made it, both my husband and I decided that we really like it.  I usually buy Near East brand.  I usually by flavored kind.  Our favorite is a Garlic and Olive Oil.  We also eat a Parmesan flavor.  But the boxes are very small and they really, when I think about it, are kind of expensive. I usually pay over three dollars for a box.  It really only works for one meal.  So to me that is expensive.  So I went to where I always go to when I am shopping for less expensive stuff – Amazon.  I ended up buying a lot of couscous.  I got FOUR bags, that can serve as FOUR meal sides EACH, for $16!  But now what do I do with all that couscous?

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

 

 

 

 

One thing I LOVE about it, is that cooks so fast.  It is so easy.  So really adding too much to it, just takes away from that.  But when you have as much as I do ya look for different things to do with it.

One thing I did that was awesome and easy was just chop us some kale and throw it in.  I chopped up the kale and two minutes into the last five minutes of the couscous cooking I put it in the pot and stirred it.  Then let the couscous continue to cook.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitBut that to me is still more of a side dish.  I wanted something to eat as a main dish.  So what do I do when I am trying to add some “weight” to a meal?  AND I happen to have made hamburgers a couple of days before?  Well, I throw in beef, of course.  It was very good!  So I thought I would share what I did.

 

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Beef, Kale, and Couscous

1/4 teaspoon coconut oil

1 tablespoon red onion

a little less than 1/4 pound ground beef

2 kale leaves

1 1/4 cup water

2 teaspoons butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon garlic salt

3/4 teaspoon powdered garlic

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitHeat the oil in a pan.  Once it is heated add the onions.  Cook the onions a bit.  Then add the meat.  As the meat is cooking, begin to boil the water.  Add the salt and butter to the water.

Fine chop the kale.  After the water has boiled, add the couscous to the water.  Set a timer for 2 minutes.  When the timer goes off sprinkle the garlic and turmeric on the couscous and add the kale, then sprinkle the garlic salt on top of the kale.  Stir everything together.  Then set the timer for 2 minutes and let it all finish cooking.

Once the couscous is done add the meat.  Then stir it all together, mixing it well.  Then serve.

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Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAs you can see from my pictures I used too small of a sauce pan to mix it all in it.  So I did the final mixing in the pan I used to cook the meat.

The beef adds a richness and not a lot is needed.  The beef also helps it be satisfying as an entrée.I added more garlic salt while it was on my plate.  I added pepper to my husband’s plate.  My hubby and I really enjoyed this so I will probably be doing it again.

So, as I said – what do you do with couscous?

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PS  While I was looking for my kale and couscous pictures a search reveal this post Couscous, Fennel, and Garbanzo Beans.  I forgot about this.

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Couscous, Fennel, and Garbanzo Beans

Posted by terrepruitt on April 25, 2016

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitSometimes I just don’t take out meat in enough time for it to defrost by dinner.  I thought about it early enough.  But I am at that state of meat-in-the-freezer where it is the stuff I don’t know how to cook.  My mental inventory check led me to hamburger, but I didn’t want to cook that, so then my brain flitted off to something else.  Then later, I think I might have opened the freezer and, uninspired, shut it.  Then, by the time I got serious it was too late.  I was HOPING it was not too late, but alas when it came time to cook dinner, the meat was not defrosted.  And on top of that we didn’t really have all that many veggies in the fridge.  Sigh.  We have lettuce and salad fixings, but nothing to cook except fennel.  We had leftover couscous from the other night.  So I was thinking I could roast the fennel AND some garbanzo beans and then mix it with the couscous.  Ahhh . . . sometimes I love when there is “nothing” in the house to eat.  I loved it.

I always say I don’t like beans, because I don’t for the most part.  I don’t like BEAN beans.  I like green beans, but I don’t think of them as beans because they are long.  Or more so because green beans are eaten fresh like a vegetable and not dried like a “bean bean”.  I do like garbanzo beans though.  And I like red kidney beans but only in Red Beans and Rice and in THIS bean salad.

I like garbanzo beans or chickpeas as they are also known, because they taste buttery.  They add a butter flavor to dishes — to me.  And I really like them roasted.  So I decided to roast them with the fennel.

I actually roasted them both on the same pan.  I put parchment paper on a large jelly roll pan.  I cut up the fennel and — well, if I am posting a recipe I put is in that form.

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Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitCouscous, Fennel, and Garbanzo Beans

2 cups prepared Couscous
olive oil
1 bulb Fennel
1 can Garbanzo beans
handful of grape tomatoes
garlic salt
pepper (if you like)
1 1/2 tablespoon butter

Drain the beans and rinse them.  Set them aside to dry.  Cook the couscous according to the package (I used left over couscous).  Preheat the oven to 450° F.  Cut up the fennel and put it on a parchment paper lined oven pan.  Drizzle olive oil on it and sprinkle garlic salt on it.  Toss it.  Then put it in the oven for five minutes.  After five minutes take the pan out and put the beans on the pan.  (I kept the fennel and the beans separate on the same pan because I was not sure they would cook to my liking at the same time.  This gave me the option of taking one off the pan.)  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic salt.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Take them out of the oven and toss both the fennel and the beans (keeping them separate).  Adding more salt if you would like.  Bake for 15 minutes.

Cut the tomatoes in half.

Add the butter to the couscous and mix it withe the roasted veggies.  Add the cut up tomatoes before serving.

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Of course, since I was just throwing veggies in leftover couscous I didn’t think to photograph any of it until the end and it came out so lovely – at least I think so.  Probably the bright red tomatoes.  They make dishes look pretty.  And it tasted fairly good.  I really like fennel.

As a note, since I used leftover couscous, I heated it in a pan with a little butter, then I added the roasted veggies.  The recipe is written using just made couscous.

If you like roasted tomatoes you could roast them, too.  I prefer tomatoes raw so I put them in just before serving.

Couscous is great. It is like pasta you can add anything you want to it.  It can be a side dish or a main dish.

Do you like couscous?

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Quinoa

Posted by terrepruitt on April 19, 2011

I heard about quinoa awhile ago, but I never actually went ahead and bought some to prepare.  I had never had it.  Today I went to lunch at a friend’s house where she made a beautiful and yummy quinoa salad.  I had heard that this grain-like food was GREAT because it had so much protein.  I’ve heard some people use it in place of rice, pasta, or couscous and I was thinking of doing the same thing.  The way my friend prepared it was awesome.  She cooked it, sautéed some vegetables, made a dressing with cilantro, and tossed it all together.  We also added thinly sliced almonds and dried cranberries.  We ate it warm, but it can be served hot, room temperature, cold . . . . however you like it.  It was very good.  I am happy to have finally tried quinoa.

I don’t understand how they categorize things, but quinoa is more closely related to greens such as spinach than it is to a grain.  We tend to treat it like a grain in the way we cook it and think of it nutritiously, but its scientific classification is, as I said related to spinach and we eat the seed.

According to WHFoods, quinoa is a great source of magnesium which helps loosen the blood vessels so it is a good food for migraine suffers to add to their diet.  Even it is actually a seed, as I said they compare it to a grain when it comes to nutrition so it is thought to have all of the health benefits of a whole grain.  Quinoa is gluten free.

A cup of quinoa has 222 calories, 4 grams of fat, 0 cholesterol, 13 mgs of Sodium, 39 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of dietary fiber, and 8 grams of protein.  Since it has all nine essential amino acids it is a complete protein.

Even though quinoa has almost twice as much protein and a lot more fiber than white rice, and more than brown rice and couscous, it has much more fat.  A significant amount more.  Here’s some numbers for comparison.

1 Cup of cooked white rice:  calories:  203     fat:  0.4     carbs:  44.1     protein:  4.2     dietary fiber:  LESS THAN 1 gram

1 Cup of cooked brown rice:  calories:  216    fat:  0.4     carbs:  48.1     protein:   5      dietary fiber:  3.5

1 Cup of cooked couscous:    calories:  176    fat:  0.3     carbs:  36.5     protein:   6      dietary fiber:  2.2

I believe it can be a nice substitute for a rice or couscous every once in a while, but I would not consider it as a replacement.  I would like to try it as a breakfast treat with honey and maybe nuts.  I think that would be a good way to start the day. Good protein, fiber, and whole grains.  Quinoa sounds very versatile.  I’ll have to remember to thank my friend again for introducing me to yet another great food.

What about you?  Do you eat quinoa?  How do you prepare it?  How do you eat it?

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