Sunday, May 13, 2012

Curried Israeli Couscous: Getting out of your rut


I like exercise.  I like exercising a lot. I'm one of those people who prioritizes a trip to the gym five days a week in order to get a good sweat in.  I'd even consider going every day but schedules on the weekend are too intense so I'm unable to get those extra workouts in.  So I manage with my five days a week.  I do yoga, some strength training, spinning, elliptical, swimming.  It's a pretty full week of workout and I feel good about the work that I do.  I consider myself pretty fit.

Until Wednesday.  On Wednesday I decided to try a class called TRX.  (this is not a promotion for this class by the way.)  I wanted to try and see how hard it would be and what it would do to my workouts.  I took an hour class, jumping, pushing, straining, flailing, grunting, groaning, pushing, shoving, squatting, piking...

Now I cannot walk.  I can walk, but it is not my normal walk.  Going up and down the stairs hurts.  Turning in my chair hurts.  Flexing my foot hurts.  Getting out of the car causes pain.  I have completely thrashed myself in this class.  I did manage to get in some spinning and some swimming today but I hear my body screaming its dismay at my total abuse of its normal working function.  "WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO ME?" it screams.

I'm not quite sure.  But I think I like it.  I think I'd like to do some more of this TRX.  Because it got me out of my rut.  I want more from my workout and I want to push my body even more.  I don't want to be caught up in the same routine, same rotation, same thing over and over.  I want something new.  It's definitely not an every day thing, or an every week thing even, but once in a while, to kick my butt and get me out of my rut, I think it is very very good.

I've been in a rut in other ways as well.  I've been relying on old faithful recipes to get me through the week, and haven't really been challenging my brain with any new ideas.  Food has become uninspiring to me (GASP) and I haven't really been able to get behind any dish.  Sure I've been cooking, but I haven't been cooking anything so amazing that I HAVE to post.

But then I had an idea for a curried couscous.  And I made this.  And it was yummy, simple and delicious with a basic grilled chicken, (or even rotisserie chicken.)  It was gobbled up by Children as fast as you could say "RUT" and there was a fight over who would get the last morsels.   It can be made ahead of time and left at room temperature, or served warm from the pan.
Curried Israeli Couscous with Raisins
Serves 4

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
1 ½ teaspoons curry powder
1 ½ cups Israeli couscous
1 ¾ cups water
¼ cup of raisins (I used golden raisins)
juice of 1 lemon
¼ cup cilantro, finely chopped
Salt to taste

Method
Add 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and carrots and saute until golden.

 Add couscous, curry powder, and a pinch of salt. Stir coating all couscous with seasoning and incorporating carrots and shallots evenly throughout.   Add water, raisins, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cover and simmer until liquid is absorbed and couscous tender. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro and lemon juice. Check seasonings and add salt as needed.

Serve warm or room temperature.

Printable recipe

to get you out of your rut

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