To celebrate my father’s 70th birthday, I am cooking tons of Moroccan food this month. He is from Morocco, and immigrated to Brazil when he was a young teenager. I turned to the amazing book Modern Jewish Cooking and found this amazing recipe. Right up our alley!
Moroccan Couscous with Winter Squash
Recipe inspired by Leah Koenig’s Modern Jewish Cookbook
Serves 6 to 8
¼ cup olive oil
2 onions, thinly sliced
4 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon paprika
One 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
3 cups (¾ lb) cubed butternut squash
2 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
¼ cup golden raisins
2 ½ cups vegetable (or chicken) broth
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 ½ cups water
2 cups Morrocan style couscous
¼ cup freshly chopped parsley
- Prepare the Sofritto: In a medium saucepan, warm the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook until it just starts to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until it’s nice and soft, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until softened, about 5 more minutes. add the cinnamon, ginger, cumin, coriander and paprika and cook, stirring often until fragrant.
- Add the chickpeas, squash, carrots, raisins, broth and 1 teaspoon kosher salt and some twists of pepper. Bring the mixture to a simmer over low heat, cover, and cook gently until the vegetables are soft and tender, about 15 minutes. Uncover and continue simmering until the mixture thickens slightly, another 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Cook the Couscous: Meanwhile bring the water to a boil in a separate saucepan over high heat. Once boiling, turn off the heat, add a pinch of kosher salt and the couscous. Cover the pan, set at the back of the stove (off the heat) and let it stand until the couscous absorbs all the liquid, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Uncover the couscous and fluff with a fork. Carefully spoon the couscous onto a large serving platter. Make a well in the center and ladle the vegetable mixture right in the center. Or, you can serve individual portions, but be sure to spoon the liquid of the vegetables as well. Sprinkle with parsley and serve hot.