First, I think it bears mentioning that couscous is pasta. Chances are you are now reacting in one of three ways:
- “Is it really? Huh!”
- “Oh, that’s right—I think I knew that.”
- “Uh, doi.”
You number threes out there, I feel you, but nobody likes a know-it-all. This is one of those things that people forget. I think it’s the name. It sounds like its own kind of grain, like barley or that other one. Farro. But it’s not. It’s the teeniest tiniest pasta. Moroccan couscous is especially tiny, but there’s also Israeli couscous, which is not quite as teeny, and smoother, like little pearls. So. That’s couscous, for those who sometimes forget. (For this recipe, I use Moroccan.) All right, number threes, you’re gonna roll your eyes at me for this next part, too, but…
I always, always make too much couscous. It puffs up! I feel like I’m making a normal amount and a few minutes later I have a whole pot full to bursting, like in old sitcoms when kids try to do the laundry and the whole house fills with bubbles. Except I’m not a child, and it’s not my first time doing this, and I know better, and I still do it every time.
This recipe is what I like to make the next day with all the extra couscous. It’s quick like a quiche without being so quichey. Toddlers don’t like quiche but they do like pasta and cheese, and I like my toddler, so I try to make him nutritious finger foods that feature his favorite textures (dry and carby) and flavors (pasta and cheese). Also, this is a great food to sneaky-hide things in.
Veggies. I’m talking about veggies.
You’ll need an oven-safe skillet (or a stovetop-safe baking pan, I guess? but that sounds like a recipe for disaster on a sitcom-kid level).
Ingredients (all measurements are approximate, like jazz)
- Butter or oil, to grease pan
- 1 egg
- 2 cups cooked and cooled Moroccan couscous
- 1–2 cups shredded cheese(s) of your choice
- Up to 1 cup of other assorted things*
*Mushrooms, onions, and other vegetables are ideal, but be wary of how much water your mix-ins are likely to release overall. Plan this the same way you would top a pizza.
- Seasoning of choice
- Grated parmesan to taste
- Preheat oven broiler. Grease the hell out of the pan and heat it on the stove on medium-high.
- In a big bowl, beat the eggs and mix in the couscous, cheese, and any extras. Season to your preference. I recommend a sprinkle of salt and black pepper at the very least, but I like to add garlic powder and some dried parsley as well.
- Spread the mixture into the hot pan, pat it down and smooth it over. Sprinkle parmesan over the top. Cook until it seems brown and crispy underneath when you lift the edges.
- Move the pan under the broiler for about five minutes or until the top is golden.