ExperiencePlus! Blog

Summer Couscous with Seafood

This recipe comes from the kitchen of Paola’s nephew, Claudio Malpezzi and the staff at the Titon Restaurant in Cesenatico, Emilia-Romagna, Italy. Some of you may be interested in the Malpezzi family background to this recipe.

Claudio is the youngest in a series of chefs and restaurateurs in the Malpezzi family. Paola’s father, Claudio’s grandfather, was, at the end of his long working career, the owner and head waiter of a renowned restaurant in the heart of Forlì, in the Emilia-Romagna region. His son, Paola’s brother Alberto, went to cooking school at the age of 14 and became a great chef, famous for his pasta and hi

s sauces. Claudio, a bit against the wish of his father, who warned him of the hardship of a chef’s life, insisted on a cooking career and is now a chef on his own. The two, father and son, work at their family restaurant at the beach on the Adriatic coast, with Massimo (Max), Paola’s nephew who led tours and managed the ExperiencePlus! operations in Italy for many years, as the restaurant manager. If you ever come to this region, we recommend that you visit their restaurant. The food is super-delicious, the fish always fresh and the white wine very refreshing!

Here is a recipe that the restaurant serves as a small appetizer, but that can easily become a main course with the right quantity of ingredients. It’s very colorful and best served cold (perfect for summer dinners), although it can also be served warm.

Ingredients for four persons:

500 grams (1 pound) couscous
skin of 2-3 zucchini (to add color and diced very finely)
1-2 carrots, diced very finely
¼ of a red pepper, diced very finely
¼ of a yellow pepper, diced very finely

¼ red onion, diced very finely
1 celery stalk, diced very finely
about 2 cups (your taste) of shrimp, sautéed briefly in olive oil and salt and then cut (not as finely as the vegetables)
about 2 cups of other seafood (fresh calamari, for example) as you like, sautéed briefly in olive oil and salt and then cut (not as finely as the vegetables)

Cook the couscous as per instructions. When the couscous is cooked but still warm, mix in the vegetables and seafood. Dress with salt, pepper and olive oil to taste, and if you would like, add a hint of vinegar.

Buon appetito!