Monday, December 07, 2009

Chickpeas and Israeli Couscous (Risotto Style)

Is it just me, or have I been posting a lot of things that are not related to recipes recently? Food waste updates (which are important, since I'm trying to consistently eliminate food waste from my life), product reviews (which admittedly, never make me sad to post because I LOVE LOVE LOVE trying new foods), and updates on my semester.

But no recipes.

Somehow, that just doesn't sit right with me. My last exam was Thursday, since I happily have no finals to take this semester, I was left with one 5th grade class left to teach on Friday and then lots of cooking to do. I've been baking a lot, which I rarely post since I rarely make my own recipes for baked goods. Perhaps I should start posting those things as well. It's a thought. It's fall, and during fall and winter I think we all get bitten a bit by the baking bug (say that five times fast!). So I believe I'll start posting the things I'm baking, with links back to the original site I got it from.

For today, however, we are combining a craving for chick peas with a need to use up some eggplant before it went bad. Initially I'd planned to make this with rice, but then I thought Israeli couscous would be so much better with it, not to mention a good way to use some more of the couscous which has been lingering on my shelves, asking me to stop ignoring it. In addition, switching to the couscous allowed me to participate in Presto Pasta Nights, hosted with month by Kevin at Closet Cooking. I've never participated in this event before, but it seemed fun. I really enjoyed this dish and plan to make it again. It's easy to make, filling, healthy and delicious - all in all a win in my book. Hope you enjoy!

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 carrots, finely diced
1/4 finely diced red onion
1 stalk finely diced celery
4 minced cloves garlic
1 teaspoon pomegranate molasses
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup diced eggplant (peeled)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
handful kalamata olives, roughly chopped
1/2 preserved lemon, chopped
3/4 cup Israeli couscous
1 can chicken broth (or vegetable)
1 1/2 cups cooked chick peas (or one can, rinsed)

Heat a skillet and add olive oil. Once the oil is heated, add carrots, onion, celery, garlic, salt, pepper and pomegranate molasses and fry lightly, for about 5 minutes. Add eggplant, lemon juice, olives and preserved lemon and lightly fry for another 5 minutes. Remove veggies and add couscous. Toast for 1 minute, then add broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring continuously. After the third addition of broth, add veggies back in as well as the chickpeas. Finish cooking until couscous is soft and liquid is mostly absorbed. Serve with cheese. Serves 2-4.

8 comments:

  1. I am really liking the Mediterranean flavour in this pasta, especially the use of the pomegranate molasses! Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights!

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  2. I love the ingredients that you've used here. This sounds wonderful.

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  3. What a totally fantastic dish. Chickpeas and eggplant are two of my favorite things and add that exotic pomegranate molasses and I'm really hooked.

    Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights and I do hope you plan on joining in more often now that you've done it once.

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  4. Kevin,

    Thanks! Mediterranean flavours really are my favourites!

    Mary,

    Thanks! I hope you enjoy it!

    Ruth,

    Thanks for having me! I intend to participate more often, now that I've found you all!

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  5. I love Israeli couscous. It has such a great texture! This looks delicious.

    You should totally post the recipes for the things you bake! I do it all the time and just cite the source. It's great for giving other people ideas.

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  6. Allie, I like all the wonderful flavors & ingredients you have going on in this recipe. I especially love the Israeli Couscous ~ to me it has a better texture and taste. And it does not get lost in a recipe. Many thanks, I am definitely going to give your recipe a try.

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  7. Joanne,

    Thanks! I totally agree about posting the recipes and linking back to the source. I'm going to start doing it more often now, for sure!

    Food Hunter,

    Thanks so much!

    George,

    I hope you enjoy the recipe, and thanks for commenting! I agree with you - I love Israeli and Moroccan couscous, but the Moroccan often does get lost in a recipe instead of being able to stand up and proudly declare its presence.

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