Couscous, increases your vital energy

Couscous is made from durum wheat semolina. Semolina is a milling product obtained by grinding durum wheat until obtaining a coarse flour, with a grain size between 0,2 and 0,5 mm.

Durum wheat semolina can be obtained from wheat grown anywhere in the world, but traditional couscous is made from durum wheat semolina grown in the Maghreb, a region that includes the countries of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Mauritania.

Durum wheat semolina can be prepared at home or bought ready-made. If prepared at home, semolina can be ground in a stone grinder or blender. Once ground, semolina can be sieved to obtain a uniform grain size.

Refined couscous loses much of its nutritional content, especially fiber and certain vitamins. However, it still contains a high amount of carbohydrates, in the form of starch. These carbohydrates are an ideal way to provide energy that passes into the blood gradually, as well as to maintain the vital functions of the body.

People with significant physical activity such as athletes, especially endurance athletes, would do well to include it in their daily diet. Furthermore, the vitamin B1 or thiamine contained in couscous (0,16 mg/100 g) makes it an even more efficient source of energy, since the enzymes involved in the assimilation of glucose need this valuable vitamin of the group. b.

Couscous, all wheat proteins

Wheat - and consequently couscous - is one of the cereals with a higher protein content, especially in the form of gluten, which makes it very nutritious although not suitable for celiacs. These proteins, being deficient in lysine, are not as complete as those from eggs or soy, but this is corrected by including ingredients rich in this essential amino acid in the diet, such as legumes, dairy products, fish or brewer's yeast.

It also contains very little fat, and a good percentage of this fat is made up of the essential fatty acid linoleic, followed by oleic acid.

Whole grain couscous is a good source of the antioxidant vitamin E and group B vitamins, which together exert a synergistic effect that contributes to the good health of the nervous system. As for its minerals, it provides small doses of calcium, potassium, iron and zinc, as well as moderate amounts of magnesium and phosphorus, which together with fiber help regulate metabolism.

Star in the kitchen

The great advantage of couscous in the kitchen is that it is much easier and faster to cook than whole grain wheat, especially if you use pre-cooked semolina, which is what is sold in most supermarkets and grocery stores around the world. It also greatly diversifies the culinary possibilities of wheat, of which the flour is usually consumed, because the grain is less affordable and requires slow and prolonged cooking.

Friend of vegetables

Couscous has a nutty, fairly neutral flavor, which picks up the flavors well and is easily impregnated with the aromas of the ingredients with which it is cooked.

It can be used to prepare nutritious and colorful salads, since its tiny golden grains contrast well with the greens and reds, as in tabbouleh, in which it is mixed with onion, tomato, parsley and mint with a lemon dressing.

Couscous is usually accompanied by legumes, meat or fish. Its grainy texture is ideal when stuffed with peppers, zucchini or eggplant.

In addition, savory and light cakes can be prepared. When absorbing the broth, the grains swell and become compact, and no egg is needed to give consistency. These cakes can be topped with any type of vegetables, mushrooms or leafy greens, or with cheese.

To flavor it, you can use tarragon, mint, cardamom, cloves, saffron, coriander or pepper.

You must also keep in mind that couscous is delicate and somewhat dry. This requires serving it with a good dressing, preferably a light sauce that flows well and leaves the grains loose.

In addition to savory dishes, couscous allows you to prepare sweets with whole sugar, honey, raisins or fruit, or enrich it with aromas such as cinnamon, orange blossom or lemon. Here you can find many recipes to prepare it

Santi Ávalos (cook)