• Prep Time 30 minutes
  • Cook Time 30 minutes
  • Serving For 4 people
  • Difficulty Normal

Recipe Description

Couscous isn’t just easy to cook, it also pairs beautifully with soups, salads and even desserts. Enjoy this combination of couscous with a side of sambal and mint chutney.

This recipe was first published in Flavours magazine.

Recipe Ingredient

  • Festive Couscous:
  • 2cups couscous
  • 1tsp salt or to taste
  • 1/4cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2tsp turmeric powder
  • 2cups thin coconut milk
  • 2 potatoes large; peeled and diced
  • 1 onion large; peeled and diced
  • 1clove garlic chopped
  • 5-6 okra, lady's fingers
  • 1cup cherry tomatoes, blanched
  • 1cup nuts, toasted; walnuts, pine nuts, etc
  • coriander leaves chopped; to garnish
  • Mint Chutney:
  • 100g mint leaves
  • 50g coriander leaves
  • 3 shallots
  • 2cloves garlic
  • 3cm ginger, fresh
  • 3tbsp lemon juice
  • 3-4tsp coconut, freshly grated; optional
  • salt, to taste
  • Sambal:
  • 50g chillies dried; soaked and seeded
  • 100g red chillies fresh; seeded
  • 10g bird eye chillies
  • 250g shallots, peeled
  • 1 onion big; peeled and sliced
  • 10g ginger
  • 15g galangal
  • 30g garlic
  • 1cup cooking oil
  • 40g tamarind pulp mixed with 1/4 cup hot water and strained
  • 50g sugaror palm sugar
  • salt to taste


  1. To prepare couscous: Pour the couscous into a mixing bowl and add the salt and olive oil. Mix well, then add the turmeric and mix again.
  2. Bring the coconut milk to a slow boil and pour over the couscous; give the bowl a little shake and set aside to allow the milk to be absorbed.
  3. To cook the potatoes: In a frying pan, heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil. When hot, add the potatoes and cook over medium heat until golden brown on all sides. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. To cook the onion and garlic: In the same pan, add a bit of oil and sauté the onion and garlic 4-5 minutes until the onion is translucent.
  5. To cook okra: In the same pan, add a bit of oil and sauté the okra until just cooked – it must still have some crunch.
  6. To serve: Toss the couscous with the rest of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and serve, garnished with coriander, with the sambal and mint chutney.
  7. To make the mint chutney: Place all the ingredients in a blender and process on medium speed to the desired consistency. Cover and set aside for a few minutes to allow flavours to mingle.
  8. To make the sambal: Place the chillies, shallots, onion, ginger, galangal and garlic in an electric blender with 1/4 cup water and blend until smooth. Pour chilli paste into a wok and cook for 5-10 minutes over medium heat until slightly dry.
  9. Add oil and cook, stirring over low heat, for 30-40 minutes until oil surfaces. Add the tamarind juice, sugar, and salt, and continue stirring for 5-10 minutes. Allow to cool before storing in the fridge for later use.

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