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gsaa: A shallow basin made of wood, clay or metal
ghorbal: A wooden hoop sieve
tbak: A shallow round basket

[This is assuming you've already grown your own durum wheat and ground it
into a coarse meal]

To make couscous grains, place several handfuls of semolina in the

Sprinkle them with salt water.

Then roll the resulting lumps around the gsaa with the palm of the
hand. Small grains or pellets will form. Keep repeating this
until all of the semolina is rolled into small pellets. Sometimes
a bit of flour is sprinkled on the semolina to help separate the

Pour into ghorbal.

Roll the pellets around the ghorbal with the palm; the smaller
finished grains will drop through the screen. Tip the larger grains
into the tbak so thay can be rolled again without returning them
to the gsaa. Use flour as necessary to reduce their size.

Pour back into a ghorbal of finer screen.

Sift, re-roll and sift again, until all of the grains have passed
through the ghorbal and are thus of suitable dimensions. Any larger
grains left in the ghorbal can be used for burkukis (a couscous
dish which uses a larger grained couscous).

Place twice-sifted couscous in the tbak.

Place couscous grains in the woven kiskas for the first of two

Steam the couscous over plain water in a couscousier until the
vapor penetrates all the grains. Then transfer the pellets to the
gsaa to cool. Break up any lumps. Steam the couscous a second
time, and return it to the gsaa.

Once cool, spread the grains on the large sheet (of cloth) to dry
in the sun. Rake them ocasionally with the fingers to expose all
the pellets to the air. When the grains are completely dry - which
may require several days, depending upon humidity - divide the
couscous among its makers and store in closed containers.


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