SPICY VEGETABLE COUSCOUS (couscous au sept legumes, for six)


Moroccans consider it good luck to use seven vegetables in couscous.  Other vegetables can be substituted so long as the number seven remains the same.  Try a red bell pepper, seeded and quartered, a small green cabbage, quartered, 2 small chiles, seeded, 2 carrots, peeled and diagonally sliced, 1 small eggplant, quartered, frozen baby peas, 1 waxy white potato, peeled and quartered, 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into large chunks, or a small turnip, peeled and quartered.

3 tablespoons olive oil

½ cup sweet potato, cut into 1 inch pieces

½ cup yellow summer squash, halved and cut into 1 inch pieces

½ cup zucchini, halved and cut into 1 inch pieces

½ cup red onion, cut into 1 inch pieces

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup plum tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1 inch pieces

½ cup frozen baby lima beans, thawed

1 cup chick peas (garbanzos)

¾ teaspoon ground cumin

¾ teaspoon curry powder

¾ teaspoon red pepper flakes

¾ teaspoon salt

freshly ground black pepper to taste

one 10-ounce box couscous (1-1/2 cups), cooked in chicken broth

1/3 cup fresh parsley, minced

harissa to accompany

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet and sauté the potato and garlic for 2 minutes. Add the red onion, sauté 2 minutes, then add the squash and zucchini and sauté 2 minutes more.
  1. Stir in the plum tomatoes, lima beans, green peas, chick peas and spices, cook for 2 minutes, then gently stir in the cooked couscous. Cook until hot, about 8 minutes (or spoon into a casserole, dot with butter and heat in a 350* oven until hot, about 15 minutes).  Garnish with parsley before serving.

adapted from Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins, The New Basics Cookbook


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