You may recall that, while in Paris this June, we dined at a little place called Au Bon Couscous near Notre Dame.
We enjoyed that meal so much that we hoped to figure out how to recreate it. I got some plain couscous from the bulk section at Sprouts and looked up a Moroccan Stew to accompany it. I still think the recipe needs some tweaking (theirs was more broth and a little thicker), but this is pretty damn close.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of crushed garlic
1 large carrot, diced (I used two)
1 large red pepper, chopped (I may also add a poblano pepper next time)
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp dried oregano
½ tsp ground cayenne pepper
½ tsp ground turmeric
1-1/2 cup vegetable stock (I might make it 2 or more cups for more broth next time)
1 cup chopped tomato, canned or fresh (I used a portion of a can to get one cup, but next time I may just add the whole can for added broth)
2 cups cooked chickpeas (I didn’t know what they meant by cooked, so I sprayed a pan with olive oil cooking spray and lightly fried them in it until they were slightly browned.)
1 medium chopped zucchini (I didn’t have any!)
½ cup black olives (I used sliced)
approx. 1 tbsp lemon juice
salt to taste
- In a good size Dutch oven (I used my Martha Stewart cast iron casserole pot) fry the onion, garlic, carrot, pepper and celery in the olive oil for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add all the dry spices and stir-fry this for 1 minute more.
- To this add the stock and the tomatoes; simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- Then add the chickpeas, zucchini and the olives, bring to a simmer, cover and cook until the zucchini is cooked, probably another 10-15 minutes. Add lemon juice, taste, and serve.
I let mine simmer much longer than this suggests, hoping that the flavors would meld a little better. Plus, Eric wasn’t home yet, so I wanted to keep it warm.
We spooned in a little Lee Kum Kee brand Chili Garlic Sauce to taste when we served ourselves and it added some yummy spiciness to the dish.
This would be a great dish for the cold months, but maybe not the best to have right now while we are having a triple-digit heat wave in Southern California. It is really simple to make and yields a lot, but would be easy to double and freeze for the future. I imagine that this would be a good dish to serve many people because they could choose the portion sizes of each ingredient to their individual taste.
I will keep that couscous place in mind when visiting Paris!
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