Within the world of cooking it is possible to find a wide variety of delicious and nutritious ingredients. Thanks to Israel, we can enjoy pearl couscous, a versatile durum wheat-based food that offers many health benefits, besides being very easy to cook.

A delicious and healthy food

Pearl couscous, such as https://riceselect.com/product/riceselect-pearl-couscous, also known as ptitim or couscous pearls, is a rather recent ingredient in Israeli cuisine, being a variation of traditional couscous with larger grains. Although the origin of pearl couscous dates back many centuries, it is said that this variant was born thanks to the Berkukes of North Africa and European Jewish immigrants, who during the 1950s migrated to Israel with culinary traditions from other countries.

There are also those who say that their origin is the Maghribiya, a traditional ingredient of Jordan, Syria, Palestine and Lebanon. On the other hand, the Israeli company Osem is credited with the invention of this couscous in the 1950s, although it is known to have existed long before. History indicates that it was born as a result of a large demand by Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, who commissioned Osem to produce a starch-rich food at a lower cost than rice. Certainly Isralei couscous is an ingredient with a lot of history behind it.

Created and developed in a short time

It was not until the second half of 20th century that the pearl couscous began to become more popular abroad, being adopted by professional chefs who ended up calling it Israeli couscous. A feature that differentiates it from older types of couscous is that its ball-shaped grains are noticeably larger, and toasted during the manufacturing process.

Today we can find pearl couscous in different presentations, such as made of refined or whole wheat, or even made with different cereals, such as barley or spelt, many of them sold in seasoned presentations. Pearl couscous is an easy to combine ingredient with meat and vegetable stews, as well as with nuts, from raisins or currants. It is perfect to eat at breakfast along with milk, honey and cinnamon, although if used with recipes that include spices and herbs, the taste you get is amazing.

It is a food that works very well as an alternative to rice and pasta in recipes, since it maintains its shape when cooked and brings a delicious texture to the preparation. You can also eat it alone, seasoned with butter, lemon, and fresh herbs.

Pearl couscous is usually toasted before cooking, a technique that gives it a golden color and a special texture.

This food provides a lot of fiber, helps lower cholesterol, prevents constipation, and even reduces the risks of suffering from intestinal or breast cancer.

Pearl couscous with tomato and mozzarella: A recipe you should try

Now that you know a little more about the pearl couscous or ptitim, you should learn the following recipe of pearl couscous with tomato and mozzarella, so you can make the most of this ingredient, both for its delicious flavor, and for its nutritional contribution.


  • 10.5 ounces of pearl couscous.
  • 4.5 ounces of mozzarella.
  • 3 ounces of dried tomatoes in oil, well drained.
  • 2.8 ounces of peeled pistachios.
  • A shelled pomegranate.
  • Three handfuls of chopped arugula.
  • Two tablespoons of fresh chives and basil, finely chopped.
  • Half a glass of lemon juice.
  • Extra virgin olive oil.
  • Salt to taste.


  1. The first thing to do is boil the pearl couscous for about 15 to 20 minutes, keep in mind that its size requires a longer cooking time, compared to other couscous. You can also follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  2. While cooking the couscous, place the rest of the ingredients in a bowl, except for lemon juice, salt, and olive oil. When the couscous is already cooked, drain it and let it cool under tap water, to avoid it from overcooking. To see if it’s ready, you can try a grain until you notice that it has a soft texture, just like pasta.
  3. Drain the couscous for a few minutes, pour it into the bowl with the rest of the ingredients, and mix well so that the couscous grains are soaked with them. Season the preparation with lemon juice, olive oil, and salt to taste.

Without a doubt, pearl couscous is a very delicious ingredient that is worth having at home to prepare delicious and healthy dishes.

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