Cous Cous – how to make it the real North African way


When I am traveling , so I always try to get behind the scenes in the kitchen in the country that I visit. Immigrants and guests visiting the center will always be questioned by me about their food. Oh how much we can learn from each other , only one dares question. You are never stupid from too much knowledge. And everyone wants to share what they can.
This with cous cous … here in europe so turned just hot water over cous cousen and so may it stand for a while . Tell that to the one from North Africa and they get something strange in her eyes.
Here I’ll show how to make cous cous in the way that is original from the beginning and that ‘s the right thing according to those which are native with cous cous . Everyone has not a real cous cous boiler, including me , but it can be done anyway. Often , I have something else to be cooked as I use the steam. And almost every home in Northafrica serves cous cous every Friday dinner.

Cous cous
Cous cous

Here are pictures , step by step how to make it real.

Cous Cous
What you need is :
1 glass cous cous ( about 250 ml )
1 damp cotton cloth
1 strainer
1 container of water
0.5 tsp salt
Add cous cousen in the damp cotton cloth and fold it up and place it in the strainer. Boil water in pan. However, should the water level does not reach up to the screen ! Cover the strainer with a lid. And let it be so over the steam for about 2-3 hours. Stir now and then and shake the cloth sometimes ,

Making Cous Cous over a pan with Zaalouk
Making Cous cous over a pan with Zaalouk
Now is the steamed Cous Cous ready
Now is the steamed Cous cous ready
Cous cous
How to make real Cous cous
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21 Comments Add yours

  1. M-R says:

    2–3 HOURS ? Gosh. Is it maybe a special kind of couscous you use ? I can’t imagine what we can buy in Australian being alright after 2Β½ hours’ steaming …

    1. Dinner Bank says:

      Its normal Cous cous you buy in any normal foodshops, even in Australia. πŸ˜‰ But as its steamed its a totally different way of cooking. πŸ™‚

      1. M-R says:

        Well, I shall give it a go ! I’ve always found that my problem with couscous in that it’s always colder than whatever I serve it with, and this method would fix that !
        TERRIFIC ! – many thanks.

      2. Dinner Bank says:

        Your welcome πŸ™‚ And this is the way its been cooked for many hundreds of years πŸ™‚

      3. M-R says:

        I forgot to ask you: if I cook a smaller quantity of couscous, do I reduce the cooking time ?

      4. Dinner Bank says:

        This is for 2 people and this is the quantity I always makes. You will see and tast when its ready. πŸ™‚ You see on the before and after pics the different πŸ™‚

  2. alifemoment says:

    Perfect tip, thanks for sharing. I love couscous and will definitely give this a go! πŸ™‚

    1. Dinner Bank says:

      You are welcome πŸ™‚ I hope you will enjoy it. It becames perfect every time πŸ™‚

      1. alifemoment says:

        I am sure is does! Thanks for sharing! ☺

      2. Dinner Bank says:

        Let me know when you tried it πŸ™‚

      3. alifemoment says:

        I definitely will! ☺

  3. Love that you talked about sharing cooking techniques. Wonderful to see couscous made from start to finish the old way. Unfortunately, it’s a little harder for the Americans to make it like you did. Most of our readily-available couscous is par cooked. If we try to steam it, it comes out looking like pellets.

    1. Dinner Bank says:

      Thank you so very much πŸ™‚ Well what I have used it totally normal couscous what, if I cook it as the package says will take 3-5 minutes. So its totally normal couscous I been using. Acutally never heard of any couscous that takes longer time to cook it. πŸ˜‰ As its steaming it takes a lot longer time to get it ready. So go ahead and use your normal couscous πŸ™‚ Just remember to turn around from time to time. πŸ™‚

  4. That is so different, very interesting πŸ™‚

  5. Ginger says:

    Thanks a lot for this post – I have been told before that couscous needs to be steamed in a cloth, but like the others I have always followed the instructions on the pack. I will try this method next time I cook couscous!

    1. Dinner Bank says:

      You will see that the result will be much better and nicer I think. πŸ™‚ I always try to cook something else to use the seam from there πŸ™‚

      1. Ginger says:

        I am always impressed by the bamboo steamers and the way you can simply stack up your foods and they all steam at the same time. Perhaps I have been just too impatient in the past? Thanks for the inspiration!

      2. Dinner Bank says:

        YouΒ΄re welcome πŸ™‚ Im happy you find what Im written intresting and useful. πŸ™‚ As Im a foodnerd, I want to inspire and share of what I know πŸ™‚

  6. Ajualuv says:

    We make cous cous all the time at home. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Dinner Bank says:

      You are welcome πŸ™‚ Happy you liked it πŸ™‚

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