Wednesday, January 3, 2018

HEARTY COUSCOUS WITH SQUASH, CHICKPEAS & RAISINS



What are you making for dinner tonight? Whatever it is, MAKE IT WITH YOUR KIDS. 

It's winter break, and north of North America had a track record of below 25 freezing weather for the past two weeks. More so, I'm cold indoors seeing kids glued to all forms of screens or tech (choosing tech to connect with each other). Snap-chatting away, glued to Netflix or Youtube Slime how-to videos, playing the 'HQ' trivia app game.. we live in cold times, not just on the seasonal front. 

So how do we fight this cold? The answer: cooking together :)

Yes, cooking together it is. Go for it, confiscate all things tech, call every kid down, gather around the chopping board, heat that oven, turn-on that stove... make cooking-together happen at once, and of course print this couscous recipe if need-be :)

Couscous is a staple in most sephardi homes, we can all use a hearty recipe like this one, one dear to our roots, filled with wholesome veggies, aromatic spices and of course heart-warming comfort. Enjoy this heartiness! 


HEARTY COUSCOUS
with squash, chickpeas and raisins

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Prep time 20 min | Total time: 40 minutes  | Serves 8-10 | Meat or VegetarianInspired by Modern Jewish Cooking


INGREDIENTS

INSTRUCTIONS

1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil

2-3 onions 
3 vine tomatoes, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups of couscous, Zinda medium blend (brand of choice)
1/2 cups of water
1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 to 3 cups of cubed butternut squash
2 carrots, peeled and cut in large dices
1/4 cup of raisins
2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth

SPICE BLEND
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ginger
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 teaspoon of ground sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
1 tsp of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Roughly chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley






For the veggies

1.  In a medium pot, heat olive oil and sauté the onions on medium heat. Stir often, until soft and lightly browned, up to 10  minutes. Toss in diced tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.

2. Add garlic, and spices, stir frequently.

3.  Add the chickpeas, squash, carrots, raisins and broth and 1 tsp of kosher salt and pepper. Turn heat down to a simmer and cover with lid, until vegetables are nice and tender about 15 minutes.

4. Uncover and continue and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, texture of mixture should be thickened. Add salt to taste.

For the couscous
5. Follow package instructions

6. Place couscous on a platter, add vegetables and top with roughly chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley and voila!