Vegan Moroccan Couscous
This recipe is inspired by a classic Moroccan preparation where Tfaya refers to sweet, caramelized onions and raisins.
Just so you know, the traditional spice blend also has cinnamon and nutmeg which are not used in this recipe, although you are more than welcome to try and experiment!
The traditional dish is served with lamb or chicken, which are great sources of protein. I decided to make a variation using chickpeas instead, creating a vegetarian/vegan option that will also help incorporate more plant-based foods in the diet. The benefits of plant-based foods are endless, but you can alternate and prepare either option.
Yields: 4 Servings
1/2 Cup Couscous
1/2 Cup Vegetable Stock
1 Cup Chickpeas (canned or home-cooked)
1/3 Cup golden/black raisins
1 Red Onion sliced into rings
1/2 Cup Parsley, chopped
1 Lemon (juice and zest of 1 lemon, about 1.5 tbsp lemon juice)
1 Whole Dry Red Pepper (broken in half, optional)
1 tsp Cumin Powder
1 tsp Coriander Powder
1/3 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1 Garlic clove minced
2 tbsp Avocado Oil
Salt and Black Pepper
- Couscous preparation: In a wide bowl, add the stock and the couscous. Mix well with spoon, taste stock for seasoning and adjust. Let it cook, covered, for 5-10 mins or until all water has been absorbed.
- After 5 minutes, check if couscous is done or add a little more boiling water and cover until done. When done, fluff with fork and set aside.
- Tfaya preparation: heat avocado oil in a deep heavy bottomed skillet/pan. When oil is hot, add sliced onions and broken whole red pepper (if using) and cook stirring once-in-a-while until onions are soft and begin to caramelize (8-10 minutes). Remove whole red pepper after first 4 minutes. The peppers are added to give some flavor to oil. Make sure to remove red pepper and discard. If you want some heat, make sure to use whole red pepper only.
- Add all spices (cumin, coriander, cayenne), minced garlic and saute stirring frequently for 1 minute. Now, add chickpeas.
- Mix chickpeas with spices, add 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper. and sauté for another 2 minutes. After that, add lemon zest and juice, stir combine. Remove from heat.
- Mix in cooked couscous and raisins. Use a slotted spoon or big fork to mix everything. Taste and adjust salt and black pepper.
- Before serving add chopped parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.