In the grandest traditions of journalism, I was offered the opportunity to try out a new product by an old school friend who is now in marketing. Awooga Awooga! Yes I got it for free. Yes I am blogging about it. And I liked it. Otherwise I would have quietly 'forgotten' to post about it. Unlike Cindy and Michael, who put on their scientists' hats and devised some fiendish experiments to compare various cous cousses (cous cousi?), I am not so gifted, and so I merely present my cookering. Deal.
The blu Gourmet Peal Cous Cous, with a picture of the dashing Gabriel Gate on the packet, is, somewhat oddly, subtitled, direct quote, "A unique Mediterranean toasted pasta Specialty". Uncooked, the grains are much larger than the standard cous cous, and quite pale. Cooked, they're creamier and yellowier.
Not being much of a cous cous cook myself - mine always turns out a bit gluggy and stodgy, never fluffy and light like when Lisa makes cous cous, parsley and cucumber salad - I was a bit apprehensive about my ability to cook the pearls. Thankfully, it was extremely easy - I poured boiling water on (the packet recommends 1 cup of pearls to 1 1/4 cup of water, but there's about 1 1/3 cup of pearls per packet so I used a bit more) and let it simmer. Ta dah - gave it a stir and done.
We cooked it in some Massel stock, which I'd go easier on next time. I think it'd be fine on its own or with just a little salt. The pearls expanded by about a 1/4 to a 1/3 in cooking, so the one packet made a quite substantial serve for me and Buzz. We served it with a red cabbage and various veggie fry. Pretty eh?
Freebies aside, I really enjoyed this. The mouthfeel is soft and round, quite different to normal cous cous, and softly smooth like well-cooked pasta. It didn't feel too filling like an equivalent amount of pasta or normal cous cous, although I note that the servings per package is meant to be 5: well not in this house!