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Recipe

Moroccan Vegetable Couscous

  • Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 red bell pepper, halved
  • 1 red onion, peeled and quartered
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 pound fine-grain couscous, (dried but not processed)
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1/4 pound cauliflower florets, cut into quarters
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes and their juices
  • 1 (16-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed well
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Toss the red pepper halves and onion quarters with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a medium bowl. Arrange pepper and onion, cut sides down, on a small baking sheet, drizzling any remaining olive oil onto the baking sheet as well. Roast for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the skin is browned and bubbly. Peel, seed, and dice the red bell pepper and dice the onion. Set aside.
  • Rinse the couscous in a fine-meshed strainer under cold running water until completely soaked. Drain and place in a medium bowl. Allow couscous to stand and swell for 5 minutes.
  • Arrange a vegetable steamer or other steamer insert with small holes in a large stockpot with water, making sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the steamer. Bring the water to a boil and add the couscous to the vegetable steamer. Cover tightly and steam for 30 to 40 minutes, or until tender and fluffy. Remove from the steamer, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and fluff with a fork. Cover to keep warm and set aside.
  • Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the carrots and cauliflower, and cook until lightly brown and softened, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic, zucchini, tomatoes and juices, garbanzo beans, chopped red onion and bell pepper, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon and salt and pepper. Bring mixture to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 7 to 10 minutes. Adjust the seasonings with the salt and pepper. Remove from the heat, stir in the parsley, and cover to keep warm.
  • In a small skillet heat the butter over medium heat. When foamy, add the almonds and cook until toasted, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • Arrange the couscous on a large serving platter and top with the vegetable mixture, tossing gently. Sprinkle toasted almonds over the top and serve immediately.