My son came home this weekend, and I wanted to make a delicious and nourishing meal for him. I’m not sure how much home cooking he’s having now that he’s living on his own! He loves dishes with “flavor”, so this seemed to fit the bill. I used Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend grains (see this post), because it tastes sooo good and makes a really nice presentation, but the original recipe called for medium grain couscous, which I think would work just fine. Everyone loved it – very nicely spiced, with subtle Middle Eastern flavors. With a vegetable salad on the side, this was a complete meal. (Note: this could easily be made vegetarian with the elimination of the chicken and the use of vegetable broth instead of chicken broth) Enjoy!
Spiced couscous pilaf (adapted from Fine Cooking magazine, Winter 2008)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 3/4 cup chicken broth
1 cup Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend grains
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken
1/4 cup dried currants1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook until the onion is very soft, stirring often, about 7 minutes. Add the cumin, coriander, turmeric, and cinnamon, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the broth, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Stir in the couscous and 1/2 teaspoon salt, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes, until all the broth is absorbed.
Scrape with a fork to fluff up the couscous, and add the mint, currants, chicken, and almonds. Stir them completely into the couscous. As you stir, sprinkle on the lemon juice. Serve immediately. Makes 3 servings.