Here’s a recipe I’ve made many times. It’s delicious, simple and cooks from scratch. Everything cooks in one pot, steaming the salmon and couscous at once and it tastes delicious. I keep almost all the ingredients in stock including frozen fish and a basil plant; all I need is a fresh fennel bulb and tomatoes and I’m ready to cook – now that’s simple. (if cooking with couscous is new to you, as it was to me, don’t worry you can find it everywhere. Buying bulk is better but you can start with boxes you’ll find at Safeway. Edmontonians: Planet Organic is actually the cheapest source) This recipe comes from Jamie Oliver’s 20 minute meals iPhone app although don’t believe the hype: it’s never twenty minutes. I had to write it up for my mom and got carried away. I made a video tutorial and afterwards I’ve got the full text write up if you don’t fancy watching me cook.
A common theme among my commenters has been how do you find time. I’ve struggled with this as well, so I wrote up the ingredients showing how you can prep this a night or two before but it’s also pretty fast to do all at once. If you’re doing it in one go, you’ll soon realize for yourself that you could be chopping tomatoes while the other vegetables are cooking, or chopping chillis while the onions soften, but let’s start simple.
|2x7oz||salmon fillets||day-of||Thaw if frozen. Lay on a plate, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper|
|4oz||cherry tomatoes||day-of||Cut in half|
|1 small bunch||fresh basil||day-of||Pick leaves off, finely chop the stalks|
|1 medium||red onion||night before||Peel, finely chop|
|1 small bulb||fennel||night before||Trim, finely chop|
|1 medium||red chilli||night before||Half, deseed and chop. Keep seeds if you want it spicier|
|½ tsp||fennel seeds||night before||Pound in a mortar and pestle. Do the same with chilli seeds if you like|
|1||lemon||day-of||Cut in half, keep ½ for cooking. Cut other ½ into wedges to be served with meal|
|salt & pepper|
|not much||plain yoghurt (optional)|
- Boil 2 cups of water
- Place pan on medium heat. Once hot add a splash of olive oil. Add basil stalks, onion, fennel, fennel seeds and bay leaf. Cook for 5 minutes until vegetables are soft
- Place couscous in a mixing bowl, pour 2/3 cups of boiling water over it. Stir with a fork to break up any lumps
- Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and add to the rest of the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper. Flatten everything out
- Add couscous to the vegetables, flatten everything out. Add another 2/3 cups boiling water.
- Add salmon fillets on top of the couscous. Grate zest of lemon. Squeeze the juice from 1/2 a lemon
- Cover pan with a lid and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes until couscous is fluffed up and the salmon is cooked
- Drizzle some olive oil over top of everything, take some basil leaves and tear them up, scatter over everything
- Serve with lemon wedges and, if you made it spicy, a bit of plain yoghurt can be alright