Thursday, June 7, 2012

Moroccan Toasted Couscous with Spiced Honey Citrus Dressing

 Long title.

 Lots of ingredients.

But please don't be deterred by either one.

Because I'd hate for you to miss out on this kaleidoscope of flavors and colors.

This stuff is perfect for a summer picnic...

You can make it a day in advance, giving the flavors a chance to fall in love in the fridge.  Also, the dressing is awesome on a green salad.


Moroccan Toasted Couscous with Spiced Honey Citrus Dressing
Serves 4

The Dressing
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger (1-inch piece)
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup lemon oil*
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

The Salad
1.5 cups Israeli couscous (also called "pearl couscous")
1.5 cups water
1/4 teaspoon tumeric
1 small red pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 small yellow pepper, seeded and finely diced
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
10 dried apricots, finely diced
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 cup shelled pistachios, toasted
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
1.5 tablespoons grated orange zest

To prepare the dressing, combine the cumin, cardamom, cinnamon, lemon and orange juices, ginger, honey and lemon oil with a wire whisk or an immersion blender.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  (This can be made in advance and refrigerated for several days.)

To prepare the salad, toast the couscous on a baking sheet in a preheated 375-degree oven for 10-15 minutes, until the couscous becomes golden brown.  

In a medium saucepan, combine the water and the tumeric and bring to a boil.  Add toasted couscous to water.  Partially cover pot with lid and reduce heat to very low.  Simmer for about 10-15 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside, fully covered, for an additional 10 minutes until all water is absorbed and the couscous is tender.  

In a large bowl, combine the couscous with the peppers, onion, apricots, raisins, nuts, cilantro, and orange zest.  Pour dressing over the salad and mix well.  Serve warm or cold. 

Recipe from The Whole Foods Cookbook