15 May 2010

moroccan couscous

I've had two butternut squash sitting in my kitchen since the winter. I'm a little embarrassed. But the point of winter squash is that it actually lasts a long time. This long? Hmmm... Well, I gave it a go with a recipe from The Kind Diet: Moroccan Couscous with Saffron (except I didn't have saffron and all the veggies it called for). The butternut squash was a little 'old' looking (a.k.a. the innards had dried slightly), but the flesh was bright orange and I peeled and chopped it and thought, well, it won't kill me.

The result? I can't believe how good some couscous and butternut squash could be. The cumin and pepper really livened it up. This recipe has you cook the couscous at the very end along with your roasted vegetables. Kind of ingenious. And easily adaptable to any vegetable you have on hand. My version below:

Moroccan Couscous (adapted from The Kind Diet, p. 148)
Two large butternut squash peeled, seeded, and diced (about 6 cups)
1/2 white onion diced (about 1/2 cup)
Olive oil
Sea salt
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
2 T Earth Balance butter
1/4 t ground cumin
1 1/2 cups whole wheat couscous

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the squash and onion on a baking sheet and toss with a splash of olive oil, 1 t salt, and 1 t pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes, turning once with a spatula.

While the vegetables roast, bring the broth to a boil in a saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in butter, 1/2 t pepper, cumin, and salt to taste. Cover pan and let steep 15 minutes.

Scrape the vegetables and any juices into a heatproof bowl. Add the couscous. Bring the broth mixture back to a boil and pour over the couscous all at once. Cover the bowl with a plate and let stand for 15 minutes. Toss and serve.

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