Here’s a recipe just in time for the Holidays and bowl games; Couscous patties with smoked prosciutto (speck).
The recipe comes from a food blogger in Slovania and I can’t recall how I happened upon it, probably Pinterest, but it seemed fascinating. She is a lawyer in Slovania and her web site is Ursalicious.com. So thank you Ursa for this unique recipe.
Couscous is like quinoa. It takes on the flavors that you mix in with it. It is a fine grained pasta that is basically semolina from durum wheat. Another thing is that it is so easy to prepare. Boil some water, throw it in there and in 5 minutes it’s done. When I make it, I add some bouillon to the water and and in this case it was seasoned vegetable bouillon.
The patties are easy to make and hold together real well. I used a small #100 cookie scoop to portion the patties and they were about 1 1/4 inch diameter, (about 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons). Fry them on medium in olive oil until they are nicely browned, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
Ursa’s recipe calls for adding dried figs to the appetizer so Mary Jo bought a big bag of them. I ate one and didn’t like the texture with all the crunchy seeds. I decided on dried cherries for a little sweetness. After we ate a few of these, we thought that soaking the dried cherries in brandy or a liqueur would add an interesting flavor.
The couscous bites are a bit crunchy and the dill cream cheese is delicious with them. As you can see, I made a few using just the cream cheese and those were really good.
Couscous patties with smoked prosciutto is a recipe to try. You can make up a batch early, put them in the refrigerator and serve when you are ready.
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- ½ cup couscous
- ¾ cup water
- 1 tsp Better than Bouillon, seasoned vegetable base
- 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
- 2 tsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 1 tsp dried chives
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1 egg
- 1 heaping tbsp cream cheese
- olive oil for frying
- 4 tbsp softened cream cheese
- 1 tbsp dried chives
- 1 to 2 tsp half and half
- pinch of salt
- 5 slices smoked prosciutto, cut lengthwise then halved making 4 pieces
- dried fruit, cherries, figs, raisins
- Fresh chives for garnish
- Boil water in a small sauce pan with vegetable bouillon, remove from the stove and stir in the couscous, then cover for 5 minutes.
- Add the thyme, parsley, chives and pepper to the couscous and combine.
- In a separate bowl, mix the egg with a heaping tablespoon of room temperature cream cheese until smooth.
- Add the egg mixture to the couscous and stir to mix well.
- Use a #100 cookie scoop to portion the patties, drop into your palm and form into a small patty.
- Heat olive oil on medium in a skillet and fry the patties until browned, turn and brown the other side, about 3 minutes per side. (I used a small skillet and fried 6 at a time)
- Mix 4 tbsp soft cream cheese with 1 tbsp dried dill and mix in 1 or 2 tsp of milk or half and half.
- Place the cream cheese in a piping bag and use a small star tip and pipe a small amount onto each couscous patty.
- Add a piece of prosciutto and some dried fruit, garnish with fresh chives.
- Serve refrigerated or at room temperature