Moroccan Couscous with Vegetables & Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Since I’ve gotten myself into a love affair with my new gym, I’ve decided that in order to accommodate that new addiction, I need to be better about packing my lunch for the office everyday. I’m generally not too bad with taking leftovers when I have them, but the problem is that recently we haven’t had a ton of leftovers. So last night while R was out at a concert for the night, I decided to still make a large dinner even though I was eating solo – a perfect way to have leftovers on hand. I had a few veggies left over from our end-of-the-season CSA delivery and decided to try my hand at a Moroccan spiced couscous.

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I’ve also been really into roasted red peppers lately, after figuring out they’re ridiculously easy to make. I figured, if I could roast a pepper, I could make a roasted red pepper hummus and save myself from the store-bought version with strange ingredients that I’m not quite sure what they are. See what happens when I’m left home alone? Epic cooking experiments.

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What you’ll need for the couscous:

  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 10 baby purple potatoes, quartered
  • 6 small-ish golden beets, diced
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 2 cups shredded kale
  • 1/2 red pepper, roasted
  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp powdered ginger
  • 1 cup dry Israeli (or pearl) couscous
  • red pepper flakes for garnish

What you’ll need for the hummus:

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and water reserved
  • 1/2 red pepper, roasted
  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 4 TBS chickpea water
  • 1 TBS sesame seeds (I was out of tahini)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • sea salt, to taste

Preheat the oven to 425 and start by chopping all your vegetables and tossing them in a little olive oil. Leave half of the red pepper unchopped, to reserve for the hummus. Place everything – except the kale – on a baking sheet and bake for about 12 minutes, or until veggies are starting to get soft.

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While the vegetables are roasting, prepare the couscous. Bring 2 cups of water to boil, add the couscous, cover, and remove from heat. The water will be absorbed by the time the rest of the meal is.

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In a large skillet or wok with a cover, saute the onion and garlic in a tablespoon of olive oil. When onions start to get translucent, add the other spices and vegetable broth. By this time your vegetables should be close to softening. Take them out of the oven and add to the wok, stirring to make sure everything is coated. Cover, and let the vegetables simmer in the broth while you make the hummus.

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Add all the ingredients to a food processor, or kitchen ninja, and process until smooth. Seriously, hummus is so easy to make I don’t know why I don’t do it more often. When the hummus is done and all the vegetables are softened and fragrant, add the kale for a minute or two to wilt it a bit.

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Serve the vegetables over the couscous and top with hummus and a little red pepper flakes for garnish. This was a surprisingly filling dinner and it was a perfect way to warm up after a cold day. And I bet it’s going to be even better as a leftover for lunch today when all the flavors have had even more time to meld.

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