I had never cooked giant cous cous until a few weeks ago when I saw it in Aldi. I tried a quick lunch experiment and it turned out well so last week I decided to recreate it with a few added touches. It turned out amazing and it’s so quick and easy.
You can scale this recipe up or down. Always remembering the rule about filling your Instant Pot up to half way when pressure cooking ingredients that expand or foam up.
The most useful thing I can tell you when cooking giant cous cous is the ratio and the cooking times and then you can play to your heart’s content so:
Ratio is 1:2.5. That’s one cup of giant cous cous to two and a half cups of liquid (homemade stock in this case).
Cooking time is one minute on manual with a 6 minute QPR. This means that six minutes after it finishes cooking you let out the rest of the steam trapped inside by performing a Quick Pressure Release.
Please note that this recipe is for giant cous cous, not normal cous cous which cooks in no time with hot water.
Instant Pot Giant Cous Cous with Seafood
Serves 4 not-very-hungry people and 2 hungry people. You can double up the recipe. Double all the ingredients except the carrot (it can make it quite sweet) and use the same timings.
Note for Thermomix users: make your life easier by chopping the onion, garlic cloves, carrot and chilli for 5 seconds on speed 5 then add the pepper and do 2 more seconds, speed 5 then decant everything into the Instant Pot’s inner pot to Sauté.
– 1 onion, finely chopped
– 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
– 1 small carrot, finely chopped or grated
– One quarter orange pepper (or your favourite colour pepper)
– Half a red chilli, deseeded (if you don’t like spicy food, don’t add it, this recipe is very versatile)
– 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or oil of your choice
– 1 small chunk of spicy chorizo (it doesn’t have to be spicy chorizo, in fact it doesn’t have to be chorizo at all, you could always use a teaspoon of paprika, although I’d probably use a teaspoon of sweet and a teaspoon of smoked paprika)
– 1 lemon, zested and juiced
– 550 ml stock (I used homemade chicken stock like this one, you could also use water and a couple of heaped tablespoons of my vegetable stock paste). This particular stock had then been used to make my Chicken, Leek and Carrot Soup with chorizo so it already had extra lovely flavour. I had made the soup with so much stock that I just took the necessary amount out of the soup.
– 145 giant cous cous (this was one and a quarter cups using the measuring cup that comes with your Instant Pot). Most supermarkets in the UK seem to sell their own brands of this type of cous cous.
– 2 spring onions, trimmed and sliced
– 175 g frozen Mixed Seafood (I used a pack from Tesco called Seafood Selection, “a cooked selection of mussels, kings prawns and squid rings), no need to defrost
– Lemon wedges
– Fresh coriander, chopped
1. Press the Sauté button immediately followed by the Adjust button to set your Instant Pot to Sauté-Less. Add the oil and sauté all the veg for a good 5 minutes. Add the chorizo and keep sauteing, letting it release its lovely juices, keep stirring to coat the vegetables.
2. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice and the stock. Stir in the cous cous, the spring onions and the frozen seafood. Lock the lid in. Steam Release Handle pointing to Sealing. Press the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button and programme 1 minute with the – and + buttons. Do a 6 minute quick pressure release at the end. This means that, when it finishes cooking, you wait 6 minutes and then do a QPR (Quick Pressure Release) to let the rest of the steam trapped inside out. I set the timer on my phone to 6 minutes when I hear the Instant Pot beep to say it’s finished cooking.
Serve with the freshly chopped coriander and the lemon wedges. Enjoy!
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