Couscous is a little known grain, used often in North African dishes, especially those from Morocco. It can be prepared quickly on the counter by soaking it in boiling water, thus leaving the stovetop free to make the topping for it. In this Marrakech Couscous recipe we are not putting stuff on it, but rather in it. Can be eaten hot as a side dish or cold as a salad.
Rob likes this recipe because it’s sweet – using fresh squeezed lemon juice, orange juice and the stock from soaked fruits.
This recipe combines dried fruits, nuts and raw vegetables with blend of tasty spices. Serve it with steamed veggies and a piece of chicken or fish, or as a salad the next day. Or get creative and stuff it into some hollowed out peppers for a stunning dinner party presentation.
2 cups water
5 dried black mission figs, diced
5 dried apricots, diced
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 1/2 cups couscous
1 tsp turmeric
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp celtic sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup red pepper, diced
1/2 cup yellow pepper, diced
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1/3 cup pistachio nuts, chopped (or your favorite raw nuts, I used walnuts)
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped (or 2 Tbsp dried if you don’t have fresh)
Juice from 2 lemons
1/2 cup orange juice (squeezed fresh from whole oranges)
1/2 cup sesame oil
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground dried ginger
1 Tbsp agave nectar
salt and pepper to taste
Place 2 cups of water in pot along with all fruits and bring to a boil. While water is coming to a boil, place couscous in a bowl with the turmeric, olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix the couscous until it is well coated with the olive oil. After the water has come to a boil, remove the fruits and set aside. Add the couscous to the water and cover with a tight lid. Allow to steam for 15 minutes.
While that is cooking, prepare the dressing by combining the lemon juice, orange juice, olive oil, cumin, cinnamon, ginger, honey, salt and pepper. Whisk until well combined.
Flake the couscous with a fork when it is done, until all the grains are fluffed and separated. Add the dried fruits, red and yellow peppers, onion, nuts and cilantro. Pour the dressing over the mixture, mix together until the ingredients and dressing are well combined.
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Marrakech Couscous Photo Credit: Her View Photography