Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Navel gazing

You know what happens when you accidentally meet a guy you really like?

You stop blogging.

That’s what happened to me anyway.

But this quote inspired me to start back.

…along with this…

…and this cookbook, which holds said quote…

…and this recipe….

…which I used as a guide to make this…

I love how raisins add little explosions of sweetness to savory food, and olives sneak in a style of their own as salty-rich nuggets. The combination of the two ingredients in Cuban picadillo is one of my favorites, so I was happy to put them into a Moroccan stew.

The raisins plump up as if they might burst, and the cinnamon stick simmers until it unfurls like a miniature magic carpet. But it’s the orange that adds the most life to the couscous with tiny flecks of its fragrant rind.

No wonder they call it zest.

Moroccan Stew with Orange-Cilantro Couscous
Adapted from Shiny Happy People by Neil Roake

Olive oil for sautéing
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cinnamon stick (about 3 inches)
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon cayenne
½ a (32-ounce) box of vegetable broth
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
About ¾ pound small red potatoes, large dice
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2-3 carrots, chopped
1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained
About ½ cup of raisins or to taste
Green olives to taste
Salt and pepper to season
Harissa, Moroccan hot sauce (I used Robert Rothschild brand from Whole Foods.)

1. Heat oil in pan. Add onion and cook until soft. Add the garlic and spices (through cayenne) and sauté for a minute longer, stirring constantly.
2. Add broth, tomatoes and vegetables through squash (add more water if necessary to cover vegetables with liquid). Season with salt and pepper. Simmer covered until vegetables are tender.
3. Add beans, raisins and olives and heat through. Season again if needed. Serve with couscous and harissa.

Orange-Cilantro Couscous
Adapted from Bon Appétit

2 cups water
About 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon finely grated orange peel
1 10-ounce box (1 1/2 cups) plain couscous
About 2 tablespoons of cilantro, chopped

1. Combine 2 cups water, 2 tablespoons juice, oil, and peel in medium saucepan; bring to boil. Stir in couscous; cover and remove from heat. Let stand until liquid is absorbed and couscous is tender, about 12 minutes.
2. Add cilantro and fluff couscous with fork, adding more orange juice if necessary. Season with salt and pepper.

1 comment:

CaRoLiNe said...