Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Moroccan Couscous And Chickpea Salad

Please Mags, can we maybe make something today that's not full of fat and sugar? Please?

That was my waistline talking to me this morning, and when it speaks, I try to listen and accommodate.

I found this recipe a few weeks ago in the USA Weekend magazine and it caught my eye not only because of its colorful presentation, but also because it incorporates such healthy ingredients. The original recipe uses dried cherries instead of dried cranberries and I also opted to use whole wheat couscous. And I think you all know by now how I feel about cilantro, so there's parsley in place of that as well.

Moroccan Couscous And Chickpea Salad
1 cup whole wheat couscous
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 cup boiling water
5 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1 large orange bell pepper, cut into bite-size sticks
1 large sweet onion, cut into thin slices
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
salt and pepper
1 16-ounce can chickpeas, drained
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
3 Tbsp frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed

Place couscous and dried cranberries in a medium bowl. Add bowling water. Stir and covered with plastic wrap. Let sit until water is absorbed, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add peppers and onions, sauteing under tender-crisp, about 5 minutes, seasoning with cumin, ginger, cinnamon, salt and pepper as they cook. Add to the couscous, along with the chickpeas and parsley.

Whisk together the vinegar, orange juice concentrate and remaining 3 Tbsps of olive oil. Pour over salad and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.


Jen @ MyKitchenAddiction.com said...

Looks delicious! I love cous cous... and the chickpeas in the salad sound wonderful!

Mags said...

Thanks Jen! It really was a different, light, and tasty salad.

Kevin said...

That is one tasty looking couscous!

Mags said...

Thanks for commenting Kevin!

Lyss said...

I just finished making it! I'll be serving it tomorrow night. I tasted it before I placed it in the fridge, and I already liked the flavor. I can only imagine it will get better as it sits. I didn't have OJ concentrate so I reduced some regular OJ on the stove. It probably will have a more mild orange taste, but like I said, it still seemed great to me! Thanks!

Mags said...

Lyss: I just get so tickled when someone makes something from my blog! I really hope you enjoy it.

June said...

Mags, we had this last night for dinner & loved it. It was amazing -great flavor and really "exotic" - will have to make it without chickpeas next time. Just found out the big guy no "yikey", but it's a really keeper. I can't wait to have some more for lunch. Thanks for sharing.

Mags said...

June: Tell the big guy I no yikey chickpeas either...lol. And I knew that before I made the recipe. I was trying to make myself like them and I thought they hid themselves in there pretty well. Thanks for commenting!

Lyss said...

The couscous was a hit! I did come away with a few suggestions. Next time instead of OJ I may try lime juice. Also, I need to be more generous with the black pepper. Thanks again!