Give Your Couscous an Oriental Kick: Asian Ribs with Couscous

By Mikka Wee/November 8, 2012

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Couscous is a something you wouldn’t normally associate with anything Asian. We hope this dish will make change your mind.

These hoisin-glazed ribs are so scrumptious you’ll forget the existence of utensils. The couscous, when tossed in with bell peppers and blanched broccoli, act as a bed of goodness that absorbs the savory sauce and evens out the meat’s flavor. The cucumber serves as a refreshing palette cleanser at the end of each bite.

Couscous is paired best with stewed meat and veggies, usually cooked in a European style. But hey, whoever thought Asian could work so well with this Middle Eastern staple? Still not convinced? Try it out for yourself and tell us what you think.

Sticky Pork Ribs on Couscous

Yield: 3-5 servings

Ingredients for the Asian Ribs

  • 1 rack baby back ribs (about 12-16 ribs)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • Water (enough to cover ribs)

Ingredients for the Glaze

  • 1/4 cup hoisin
  • 1/4 soy sauce
  • 1/4 honey
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Ingredients for the Oriental Couscous

  • 2 cups cooked couscous
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup minced bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup blanched and chopped broccoli florets
  • 2-3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Cucumber, julienned (cut into thin strips)

Procedure for the Oriental Couscous

  1. Toss all ingredients together
  2. Set aside.

Procedure for the Glaze

  1. Boil together for 2 minutes.
  2. Cool and set aside.

Procedure for the Asian Ribs

  1. In a pot, put the ribs, seasonings and water.
  2. Boil for 1.5-2 hours or until tender.
  3. Drain liquid and cool.
  4. Slice into ribs.


  1. Toss ribs in glaze.
  2. Arrange ribs on a foiled tray.
  3. Make sure there’s no pool of sauce as this will burn easily.
  4. Bake in preheated 350 degrees oven for 12-15 minutes or until sticky.
  5. Remove from oven and brush with more glaze.
  6. Serve with couscous and cucumber.

Mikka Wee

Managing Editor

Mikka Wee’s goal is to travel the world with a backpack stuffed with her books and not much of an itinerary. With an appetite thrice the size of her 5-foot frame, waffles are the one thing that makes her weak in the knees. She also likes to torture herself with sci-fi movie marathons until her brain turns into goop. Her list of not-so-secret culinary crushes includes David Chang, Ivan Orkin, Rene Redzepi, and Anthony Bourdain. Alexander Supertramp is her hero. See More.

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