First of all, when you hear the name couscous? The question that has to arise in your mind is what is couscous, how many types of couscous are there, and is couscous gluten-free or not?
So! Do not worry; at the completion of this article, you will have all the answers.
What is Couscous?
In a sense, couscous is the pasta of the East. It is so delicate that many people mistake it for a meal with many grains. Semolina, the significant part of many Asian pastries made from dough and several stew and soup meals, is traditionally used to make couscous.
It serves as the foundation for a number of regional recipes, including those from Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and North Africa.
Types of Couscous
Couscous comes in four main types: Moroccan, Israeli, Lebanese, and whole wheat. Both their size and the duration of their steaming vary. Whole wheat is the type that has the most nutrients, including iron, fiber, and others.
This fine-grained kind is the most popular in the United States. Sprinkle it over salad greens like quinoa, combine it with finely chopped vegetables for an easy salad, or use it to sop up sauce like rice or pasta. Eat it warm or cold.
This couscous has bigger, roasted balls that have a chewier, softer texture and a little nutty flavour. Salads are adored by this couscous.
Also known as Moghrabieh, is a variety of couscous that is native to Lebanon. Although it may be covered for Israeli or pearl couscous, its bigger size means that I usually only use it in traditional Moghrabieh recipes.
Lebanese dish called moghrabieh is prepared with chickpeas, onions, and chicken broth.
What is Couscous Made of?
Semolina is traditionally crushed to make couscous. Durum wheat is used to make semolina, along with water. Then, it is shaped into incredibly tiny balls that, when steamed, will be coarsely crushed.
The couscous appears brittle and grainy as a result of being crushed. The bulk of people don’t realise that it is truly a form of little pasta because of this.
In a couscoussier, traditional Moroccan couscous is steam-cooked three times. In the US, fast-steaming instant couscous sachets are increasingly widely available.
Many regions of the world have also created more couscous types that are produced from certain fruits and vegetables and are used to prepare robust soups, stews, and side dishes.
What Is Gluten?
Recall that gluten is a protein that is present in cereals. Although the bulk of sources list wheat, barley, and rye as the only grains that contain gluten, the truth is that other grains, including oats and corn, also contain gluten.
Although gluten may be found in a wide range of foods, it is not a necessary part of any diet. Actually, there are no nutrients in gluten that cannot be gotten more actually from other, more healthy food sources, such as unprocessed fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds, pasture-raised livestock and eggs, and fantastic fish.
In fact, gluten is not only not necessary, but also harmful.
Is Couscous Gluten Free?
Most couscous has gluten. Typical varieties of couscous made from wheat flour will rule in retail markets.
So, if you adhere to a gluten-free diet, you shouldn’t consume couscous unless it is specifically marked as such. If a restaurant claims that its couscous is gluten-free, you must, of course, have faith in them to provide you with safe gluten-free cuisine.
Is Israeli Couscous Gluten Free?
Unfortunately, neither is Israeli couscous, sometimes referred to as enormous couscous.
It is officially a sort of pasta that also incorporates gluten-containing semolina flour.
Is Pearl Couscous Gluten Free?
Unfortunately, pearl couscous also has gluten.
It is made of semolina flour, includes gluten, and cannot be consumed on a gluten-free diet, just as Israeli couscous.
Gluten Free Couscous
There are a few gluten-free companies that produce couscous that is just for celiacs. To make your favourite couscous dish gluten-free, just make these few adjustments.
Gefen Gluten Free Couscous
This choice is truly delectable. It is manufactured using potato starch rather than wheat. The consistency, nevertheless, is very similar.
Streit’s Gluten Free Israeli Couscous
Streit’s is a fantastic choice if you’re missing the larger Israeli-style couscous! It has a fairly wonderful consistency and is created with potato and tapioca.
Lieber’s Tricolor Gluten Free Couscous
This multicoloured couscous from Lieber’s is ideal if you’re seeking for gluten-free couscous that looks gorgeous in your dish. It has a superb taste and has a very fine grain.
Additional Gluten Free Couscous Options
Try one of these grains if you’re seeking for couscous alternatives besides gluten-free couscous. On its own, they resemble couscous somewhat and work well as a substitute in dishes.
Quinoa is a complete protein even though it is technically a seed rather than a grain.
Although it is a little bit smaller than couscous, it is a decent substitute since it has a comparable texture and flavour.
Quinoa is an extremely affordable replacement that is also really handy.
Fonio is a tasty, high-protein grain (and naturally gluten-free).
I wholeheartedly urge you to give it a try if you haven’t already. It has an extremely great healthy profile and a mild nutty flavour.
Gluten-free sorghum has a rather nutty flavour. It is really meaty and holds up nicely in a meal made with couscous.
What Flavour Does Couscous Have?
One of the most well-liked alternatives to high-carb meals like rice is couscous. But if we’re being completely honest, couscous lacks taste and is very boring.
It has some nuttiness to it, but it’s not overpowering. But because it can be used in so many different ways, it has become more popular in world cuisine.
Health Benefits of Couscous
More information about couscous’s health advantages is provided below.
May Have an Anti-cancer Potential
As previously shown, selenium is a highly useful piece of couscous that has a variety of health advantages, including a crucial part in the metabolic pathways that may promote the growth or protect against certain malignancies.
Recent research has connected a body’s lack of selenium to an improved risk of prostate cancer development. Selenium in the body in the right proportions has anti-metastatic effects and acts as a general cancer preventive.
The bulk of the focus to yet has been on prostate cancer, although research that relate couscous and selenium to other forms of cancer are still being conducted.
When paired with vitamin-E and antioxidants like selenium, smoking can reduce the incidence of lung cancer and carcinogenesis.
Might Promote Wound Healing
Your body goes into overdrive to maintain normal function during periods of healing after wounds, illness, and surgery, and it devotes a lot of energy and nutrients to extensive restoration.
Since it has a lot of protein, couscous might be a huge aid during this time. Protein plays a crucial role in the metabolism of the enzymes that help with wound healing both inside and externally.
Considering that more than 15% of the human body is made up of protein, couscous is an important part of any diet high in protein.
Healthy Cardiovascular System
One of the most crucial elements in couscous is selenium. Many of the health advantages we discuss in this article depend on this part in one way or another.
Despite being a trace mineral that is extremely hard to locate in dietary sources, selenium is still crucial for human health.
Couscous is one of the greatest sources of selenium, with more than 60% of the suggested daily need in a single serving.
The blood vessels are able to lessen the collection of plaque and risky LDL cholesterol on artery and vein walls thanks to its potent antioxidant effects.
Consuming couscous on a regular basis lowers your chance of contracting deadly diseases including atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.
Weight Loss Support
Couscous low calorie content, which makes it a good dietary item, is perhaps its most useful feature. Grain products are often the answer for dieters seeking for calorie-free versions of their favourite foods.
They have little calories, are quick to prepare, and are moving. When it comes to grains, couscous is really preferable to rice and quinoa since each cup has fewer than 200 calories.
This amounts to less than 10% of the suggested daily calorie intake for individuals. As a result, it’s the ideal alternative for those who want to lose weight mostly by dieting.
Few individuals are aware that couscous may boost the immune system. It works well as an antiviral and antibacterial agent. The herpes virus, cancer cells, cold sores, and shingles are all actually repelled by it.
Including couscous in your diet promotes both healthy eating and overall health. It may have previously appeared hard to switch your chosen pasta and rice for low-calorie versions without compromising flavour.
However, there is now a technique to change your subsequent meal into a tasty, healthy hit.
Quinoa triumphs in terms of general wellness! Quinoa is a healthier option since it has complete proteins, fibre, and a wealth of minerals. Couscous is a fantastic choice for people watching their caloric intake or short on time.
It is generally accepted that diets that are high in protein but low in fibre or that include simple carbs without fibre are quickly absorbed and are easy to digest. Couscous is useful in this situation.
Due to its ability to reduce blood sugar, couscous is a rich source of fibre, a crucial vitamin for diabetics. In only one cup of cooked couscous, there are up to 2.2 g of fibre can be found. With 5.95 g of protein and 0.251 g of fat per cup, it is also a substantial source of protein.
The fact that couscous is made from durum wheat semolina means that it contains gluten. For anyone with celiac disease or gluten intolerance, couscous contains gluten and should not be consumed the positive news.
There are several healthy couscous substitutes as well as a tonne of delectable gluten-free cooking options.
Here are a few more articles, that you might like.