Skillet Fried Couscous with Asparagus and Bacon

Fried rice is an undeniably delectable dish, and I like to mix it up by using couscous instead of rice. This dish is very hearty, so it pairs well with a simple roast chicken or topping of grilled shrimp.

Ingredients

1 cup Pearl couscous

½ cup asparagus, blanched and chopped

4 strips bacon, chopped

2 eggs

1 tbsp. Mirin (Japanese cooking wine)

1 tbsp. soy sauce

½ tsp. rice wine vinegar

Soy sauce paste Saucy Note: Soy sauce paste is what makes restaurant fried rice so much better than the stuff you make at home. It has the consistency of thick syrup and has a very rich soy flavor. Buy it at Asian grocery stores or online.

Sesame oil

Instructions

Trim asparagus and blanch for 2 minutes in boiling water. Chop into bite size pieces.

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Bring ¾ cup water to boil and stir in couscous. Cover and simmer for 8 minutes.

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Mix eggs with mirin and soy sauce. Scramble until firm and set aside.

While couscous cooks, fry bacon in large non-stick skillet. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and wipe out most of the grease from the pan with a paper towel, being careful of the hot grease-leave about 1 tbsp. grease.

Swirl 1 tbsp. sesame oil into the pan with the bacon grease over high heat. Add the cooked couscous and chopped asparagus and cook rapidly, stirring frequently while couscous toasts. After about a minute, add 1-2 tbsp. soy sauce paste and stir to incorporate. When the couscous and asparagus are hot and slightly toasted, remove from heat and add eggs, bacon, and rice wine vinegar. Stir and serve immediately.

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