Chicken with Israeli Couscous, Lemon and Tomato

Chicken with Israeli Couscous, Lemon and Tomato

This is a delicious, simple weeknight dinner that will lend itself to most any skinless cut of chicken. I used chicken breast tenderloins because they were what I had, but breasts or thighs would work just as well. If you want it quick-cooking, probably no bone-in chicken (sadly) — but this is a preparation that’s flavorful enough that you don’t really need the bone to lend flavor, and fast enough that the chicken stays pretty juicy. The Israeli couscous soaks up all the flavors and each pearl kind of bursts in your mouth, which is just delightful.

Chicken with Israeli Couscous, Lemon and Tomato, adapted from The Bitten Word

2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 c. Israeli couscous
6-8 chicken breast tenderloins
1 small onion, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
~1 lb. tomatoes, sliced if large, halved if cherry/grape
zest of 1 lemon, grated
pinch saffron
1/2 c. dry white wine
1 1/2 c. low-sodium chicken stock
1 c. frozen peas
1 lemon, cut into wedges (use the zested one unless you need to be fancy)
salt and pepper to taste

Heat 1 Tbsp. of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When it shimmers, add the couscous and stir to toast; it should get very slightly brown and smell a wee bit nutty. After a minute or two, pour it off into a bowl.

Drizzle in the rest of the olive oil. Season one side of the chicken with salt and pepper; put it into the pan seasoned side down and season the other side while the first one browns. Flip it when it’s brown, after about 5 minutes, and let the second side get nice and browned up. Remove it to a plate.

Add the onion to the skillet with the remaining oil and drippings and cook until softened, about 8 minutes. Stir in garlic, lemon zest, tomatoes and saffron. Once the tomatoes have given up their juice, add the chicken back to the pan along with any juices that have collected, and add the wine. Let it cook for 4-5 minutes, then add the couscous and the broth (along with some salt!) and stir everything together. Cover and drop the heat to low, then simmer for 12-15 minutes, until the couscous is almost done. Stir in the peas and cover again to simmer for another 2-3 minutes.

Serve with a wedge of lemon!

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~ by iliadawry on 12 April 2013.

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