Moroccan Couscous with Saffron

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I adore couscous, and this is a wonderful way to prepare it. Not only is it tasty, it looks gorgeous on a big serving plate as the centerpiece of a meal. You can complement it with a simple salad or let it be the beginning of a feast that includes soup, hummus, and veggies. This recipe serves six, but you can halve it or just make a big batch and keep leftovers in the fridge.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups peeled butternut squash, cut into ¼ to ½ cubes
  • 2 cups yellow onion, large dice
  • cups carrots, cut into ¼ to ½ cubes
  • ½ cups zucchini, cut into ¾ cubes
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • fine sea salt
  • teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance butter
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon saffron threads
  • cups whole wheat couscous
  • 2 scallions, white and green parts, chopped

Method

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Place the squash, onion, carrots, and zucchini on a baking sheet and toss with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, turning once with a spatula about midway through.

While the vegetables roast, bring the vegetable broth to a boil in a saucepan. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the butter, remaining ½ teaspoon pepper, cumin, saffron, and salt to taste. Cover the pan and steep for 15 minutes.

Scrape the roasted vegetables and their juices into a large bowl, and add the couscous. Bring the vegetable broth back to a boil, and pour over the couscous mixture all at once. Cover tightly with a plate and allow to stand for 15 minutes. Add the scallions, toss the couscous and vegetables with a fork, and serve.

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