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Playing Grilled Fish Kebabs and Couscous with Mint Pesto


  • A few dashes hot sauce
  • 7 metal skewers
  • 1 1/2 pounds halibut, cod or any firm, white fish fillets, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 3 lemons, juice of 2 1/2, 1/2 sliced, divided
  • A few dashes hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 20 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 red bell peppers, chopped into large pieces
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, chopped into large pieces
  • 2 red onions, chopped into wedges
  • 2 pints multi-colored grape tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups chicken stock, according to couscous package directions
  • 1 6 to 10-ounce box couscous
  • 1 cup big green olives, pitted and chopped
  • 1/2 cup pinenuts, toasted
  • 1 cup (a large handful) parsley
  • 1 cup (a large handful) mint
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 4 pieces flatbread
For the yogurt dipping sauce
  • 1 cup Greek-style yogurt
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled and grated
  • 1/4 small onion, grated
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper


Serves: 4-6 servings


Preheat broiler, grill or grill pan.

Toss the fish into a large bowl with the juice from 2 1/2 lemons, hot sauce, 1 tablespoon EVOO, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Skewer 2 pieces of fish onto a metal skewer followed by a bay leaf. Repeat this process until the skewer is full, then repeat until all the fish is used up. You should have about 3 skewers of fish.

Thread the red and yellow pepper chunks and onion wedges, repeating every other until the two skewers are full. Onto the remaining 2 skewers, thread the cherry tomatoes until they are used up.

Place the pepper-onion skewers on the grill. After 2 minutes, rotate them and place the fish skewers on. After 2 more minutes, rotate the pepper-onion and the fish skewers and place the tomatoes skewers on the grill. In another couple minutes or so, check all of the skewers; they should be golden brown, tender. Remove them from the grill and reserve.

While the skewers are cooking, bring the chicken stock up to a boil. Add in the lemon slices, chopped green olives, salt and freshly ground black pepper, then whisk in the couscous. Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit about 5 minutes.

In a food processor, add the toasted pine nuts, parsley, mint, garlic and Parmigiano, and pulse until finely chopped. Stream in olive oil, pulse until combined and reserve.

In a medium-size mixing bowl, mix together the yogurt, cucumber, onion, lemon juice and zest, cumin, salt and freshly ground black pepper.

When the couscous is ready, fluff it with a fork then stir in the pesto. Serve the skewers over the couscous with the yogurt dipping sauce and grilled or toasted flatbread alongside.