Friday, November 19, 2010

Moroccan Chermoula Fish Kebabs with Couscous

Moroccan Chermoula Fish Kebabs 1

Here is a fish dish that you are going to want to make over and over again this summer.  Okay, I know a lot of you are headed towards winter right now, not summer - but, take my advice and bookmark this one right now, because when summer rolls around you will definitely want to make these, and you don't want to find yourself (with a barbeque planned) scratching your head and wondering where you saw this recipe.  Go on, do it now - I'll wait ......  Oh and, by the way, if you find yourself in six months time enjoying a balmy evening out on your patio, with a bunch of these on the barbeque, please don't email me and tell me what a wonderful time you're having - by that time I'll be rugged up in a blanket or huddled over the heater and the last thing I'll want to hear about is the warm, sultry evenings you are having!!

Anyway, back to the kebabs.  These have loads of flavour;  they are healthy and delicious, quick and easy to prepare, and in fact can be prepared largely in advance;  they are colourful and gorgeous to look at;  they take just moments to cook;  and, let's face it, who doesn't love food on a stick?!  What's more, if the weather's not great outside, these can just as easily be cooked on a chargrill indoors (as I did) - so there you go, you don't need to wait for summer - you could make these right now wherever you live.

This recipe came from the November 2007 issue of Delicious magazine and, in my endeavour to whittle down my large pile of food magazines, is my contribution this week to Magazine Mondays.  I did make a couple of small changes to the original recipe - I omitted red onion from the chermoula and spring onion from the couscous (since, as I'm sure you know by now, we don't do onion at our house).  I also added some chopped pistachios and preserved lemon to the couscous.

Moroccan Chermoula Fish Kebabs with Couscous Recipe
Adapted from recipe in
Serves 4
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe

3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
pinch saffron threads
juice of 1 lemon
1/3 cup olive oil
2 cups coriander leaves
large pinch flaky sea salt

800g thick, firm-fleshed fish (I used monkfish), cut into 3cm (1-1/4 inch) cubes
1 red pepper, cut into 3cm (1-1/4 inch) squares
1 orange or yellow pepper, cut into 3cm (1-1/4 inch) squares
16 fresh bay leaves

2 cups couscous
1 cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped
handful of shelled pistachio nuts, roughly chopped
skin of half a preserved lemon, finely sliced

To serve:
plain yoghurt, optional

Put all of the chermoula ingredients into a food processor, and process until a coarse paste is formed.  Remove two tablespoons of the paste and set aside, then coat the pieces of fish in the remaining mixture.  Cover and allow to marinate in the fridge for one hour.

Moroccan Chermoula Fish Kebabs 3

Meanwhile, if you are using bamboo skewers for your kebabs, soak them in boiling water for at least 10 minutes.

After the fish has marinated, thread a bay leaf onto each skewer, then alternate pieces of fish with the coloured peppers, and finally finishing each skewer with another bay leaf.

Moroccan Chermoula Fish Kebabs 2

Preheat a chargrill pan or barbeque to medium-high heat.

Meanwhile, put the couscous into a bowl with the two tablespoons of marinade that you reserved earlier.  Pour 2 cups of boiling water over the couscous, stir, and cover loosely with a tea towel.  Set aside for 10 minutes.  Fluff the couscous up with a fork, stir in the chopped pistachios, preserved lemon, and remaining coriander leaves.

Cook the kebabs on the heated grill plate, turning until fish is completely cooked through and slightly charred - this will take approximately 6-10 minutes, depending on the type of fish you have used, and how tightly you have threaded your skewers.

Serve the kebabs on a bed of the couscous and drizzle over some of the yoghurt.

I'm submitting this post to Magazine Mondays - mmmm, can't wait to see what else is cooking.  You can find last week's round-up here at "Life's a Feast".


  1. The kebabs look delicious. I really like chermoula sauce but don;'t cook it / with it enough.

    The bonus to living here is that I could pretty much enjoy these all year round. ;-)

  2. Thanks Deb - I don't know why I don't make chermoula sauce more often either - it's so fresh and flavourful, and just perfect with fish. Think I'm going to be making it a lot more this summer - would be great with some nice fat shrimp I'm thinking :-)

  3. Sue - this looks crazy good!! Totally amazing on every front - love all the ingredients, looks amazing, healthy, quick - what more could you ask for?! I'm also always looking to find ways to use my preserved lemons that I made months ago and have sitting patiently in my fridge :-) Great recipe!!


  4. I've actually never seen fish kebabs before but why not! So much healthier than beef and possibly even more delicious. Love the chermoula on these!

  5. monk fish is probably my all-time fav fish. I works wonderfully grilled. Love the spices!

  6. Hi Rebecca - thanks, hope you enjoy it :-)

    Thanks Veronica - I love preserved lemons - I do use them a lot in salads (and also in dressings sometimes), but it's easy to forget about them - it's good that they keep like literally forever :-)

    Hi Joanne - fish kebabs do make a great healthy alternative to beef or also to chicken (which can be a bit dodgy to get properly cooked)

    Hi Toby - thanks for visiting - monkfish is one of my favourites too - one of my favourite ways of having it is to wrap it in pancetta and roast - very delicious.


  7. Sue - I so have this bookmarked - what a delicious looking dish - full of healthy goodness! I can't wait till summertime!
    Christy (frugalcrunchychristy - I am at a hotel computer!)

  8. Hi Christy - thanks, I hope you you enjoy it :-)

  9. The marinade had my mouth watering! Delicious!

  10. Looks so delicious!

  11. I am a Moroccan chef. This Chermoula is very tasty and goes a lot with fish. and y can make with Couscous or Tagine. Just one thing if its added will be great. Its Harissa. it makes very delicious. Please guys try it and see the difference.
    If y dont know how to make Harissa please write me on email bouyamed at hotmail dot com

  12. This looks incredible! So glad to find you here. I just joined the Jerusalem club and saw your aubergine post. I love your cooking style!


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