I love to try different ingredients that I’ve never had before. It all started because… I’m curious! That’s right! I’m a little curious kitten! Even at a young age, I wanted to taste “new” food. Later on when I was a young lady, this curiosity still remained. One day, I met a man, Mario, who had the same interest as me. Once a month, we would go out to a different ethnic restaurant and try its cuisine. The method of choosing was quite simple. In the yellow section of the phone book was a page with all the International Restaurants in the Montréal area. We took turns and picked one each month…! Tada! Unfortunately, this lasted for only a short time and we never went to all of them of course.
One restaurant I still recall to this day was Moroccan. The flavors and aromas were out of this world… well out of this continent for sure…lol! I couldn’t believe how everything tasted so wonderful. There were spices I never knew existed. There dishes were so colorful and inviting! It was probably one of my best nights out that I experienced from our restaurant tour.
I went to this restaurant a couple times before the owners sold it. One traditional dish from North Africa I worked to duplicate for years from that restaurant is Couscous. There are so many variations of this popular dish and I’m sure if you visit Morocco or Tunisia, you’ll find yourself eating couscous in many different ways. My version is absolutely delicious and pretty close to what I can remember. I am positive you’ll enjoy the taste and its aroma. It is such a lovely side dish to serve with any protein. Give it a try, you’ll love it!
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
- 1/4 tsp. turmeric
- 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. cumin
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 cup dry couscous
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 2 tbsp. brown sugar
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed well
- 1/2 cup red onion, finely chopped
- 2/3 cup red pepper, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1-2 tbsp. parsley, chopped (substitute cilantro)
- 1/4 cup slivered almonds
KITCHEN TOOLS: The Prepworks by Progressive Magnetic Measuring Spoons (Stainless Steel) - Set of 5 can be purchased in the "SHOP" section of Club Foody.