Golden Root-Vegetable Couscous is a Moroccan inspired vegetarian dish chock full of seasonal root vegetables, squash and chickpeas and flavoured with onions, garlic and fragrant spices. The dish took a while to prep as there was much chopping of vegetables required but cooked quite quickly. I found the combination of carrots, parsnips, kohlrabi and butternut squash a little sweet so doubled the canned tomatoes for balance. I cooked the vegetables in a tagine, which requires less liquid than a regular pot, so only 1/2 the vegetable stock was needed.
Using the tagine meant that I had to set up a separate pot with some boiling water to steam the couscous (in a cheesecloth lined colander works well for me). I quite often resort to the quicker method of pouring boiling liquid over the couscous but this method of soaking the couscous first, then steaming it results in such an incredibly light and fluffy end product, it's worth doing - sometimes. With some toasted pine nuts mixed in, it was the perfect vehicle for the fragrant tagine.
This dish, with its heady scent of cumin, coriander, cinnamon and saffron and a spoon of harissa for a little heat was hearty and wholesome and utterly delicious.
The recipe for vegetable couscous appears in the "Weekend Lunch" section of the book, which meant that a dessert was mandatory ;)! So to finish, I made Turkish Delight Syllabub, an Old English dessert of whipped cream thickened (and stabilized) with lemon juice or alcohol - or both as in this recipe - that's been given a Middle Eastern twist with the addition of rosewater and orange flower water and a crunchy pistachio topping. It was light and airy, had lovely floral notes, and served over some fresh orange segments made a nice end to the meal. The recipe can be found on Nigella's website here.
Visit here to see what else is cooking this week at IHCC.