This is not the dish that I started out making. I had thawed the chicken tenders to use with a Shake-n-Bake mix to make, well, chicken tenders. But that wasn’t working out so well. The integrity of the chicken pieces was horrible and they were just falling apart. Plan B. I’ll make chicken pieces instead of tenders. I’ll just start pulling apart the tenders into pieces. Only the pieces started becoming shreds. Plan C. Chicken patties. I’ll just process an onion and add some bread crumbs and an egg then throw in the chicken. I can form that into patties. Except the formerly frozen chicken is so waterlogged that it’s got no cohesion and the mixture is just making a mess. Plan D. Throw it all back in the processor and add dry ingredients until it can be worked by hand. I’ll form it into balls, cover it with sauce, sprinkle it with herbs and bake it, covered, at 400°F for thirty minutes. Let’s see. What went into it in total.
1 lb chicken
1/4 cup flour
6 oz Pepperidge Farms Stuffing Mix
2 8 oz cans tomato sauce
Dried Italian(esque) herb mix
This is almost what I wanted when I started cooking it. I mean, I was going to add black olives, broccoli, and sun dried tomatoes to the pearl couscous. That part worked out fine. But somewhere along the way, the amount of water that was carefully measured to insure that it was all absorbed into the pearl couscous just didn’t work out. Maybe the frozen broccoli was water infused. Maybe the olives when heated became hydrophobic. Maybe the sun-dried tomatoes gave off water rather than absorbing it. In the end, I had a perfectly cooked dish that had an extra cup of water turning it soupy. Which is exactly why I keep Riceland Moroccan style couscous in my pantry. If you’ve got a cup of water in any dish that didn’t get incorporated into the whole, add a cup of Moroccan couscous and it’ll soak it right up. And ending up with Double Couscous instead is no hardship.
1 bag frozen broccoli florets, chopped
1 can black olives, chopped
1/2 bag sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 cups water + liquid from the olives to total 2-1/2 cups
2 cups RedMill Pearl Couscous
1 cup Riceland Moroccan style Couscous (or as much as needed)