Ben Laurie blathering

Picnic Cous Cous

I invented this to eat at Glyndebourne, doncha know.

Olive oil
Onion, chopped
Cumin, dry fried and ground
Coriander, dry friend and ground
Ginger, finely chopped
Chicken breast (might also be nice with thigh), roughly chopped
Dried apricots, soaked
Chicken stock
Pistachios, shelled and roasted
Pine nuts, roasted
Coriander leaf
Cous cous

Although I describe the nuts as roasted I actually did them in a dry frying pan over a low heat, stirring constantly. Likewise the spices (of which you need a lot).

Gently fry the onions in olive oil until soft. Add the ground spices and ginger, increase the heat a little, stir and fry for a couple of minutes. Add the chopped chicken breast and cook, stirring occasionally, until mostly done. Add the liquid from the soaked apricots, roughly chop the apricots and add them, plus the raisins and a little concentrated chicken stock (I use a liquid concentrate). If there isn’t enough water, then add some more, but you don’t need to even cover the chicken. Salt and pepper to taste. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally and breaking up the larger chicken pieces with your spoon. After about 30 minutes, turn off and leave to cool (overnight if you wish).

Then prepare the cous cous according to its instructions. Once it is ready, mix in the cooled (and thickened, there should be no free liquid by now) chicken stuff, the nuts, lots of chopped coriander and a little chopped parsley. Then wrap it up and take it to your picnic. We had a green salad and a potato salad with it.

I was planning to offer lime wedges for squeezing over it, but I forgot.

Also nice microwaved if you have leftovers.


  1. While you’re boasting, what did you see? (Me being slightly envious)

    The recipe sounds very nice, BTW.

    Comment by lars — 20 May 2008 @ 18:16

  2. We saw “L’incoronazione di Poppea”.

    Comment by Ben — 21 May 2008 @ 4:40

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