Saturday, May 10, 2008

Couscous with Currants, Barberries & Mint

Jeanne’s Couscous with Currants, Barberries & Mint
From Blue Eggs & Yellow Tomatoes

Hands on time: 15 minutes
Serves 4-6

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1 tsp turmeric
2½ cups water
2 cups couscous
3 green onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/3 cup currants
¼ cup barberries (optional – see note)
¼ cup fresh mint, chopped
¼ cup fresh orange juice
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 tsp grated orange zest
Salt and pepper

1. Combine the olive oil, garlic, salt, turmeric and 2½ cups water in a heavy, medium sized saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the couscous. Cover and let stand 5 minutes.

2. Fluff the couscous with a fork and transfer to a large bowl. Cool slightly.

3. Stir in green onion, pine nuts, currants, barberries, mint, orange juice, parsley and orange zest. Season with salt & pepper to taste. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.) I added a little white wine vinegar as well.

Jeanne’s note: “This is an incredibly versatile dish. You could make it a main course by adding diced cooked chicken and serving it on a bed of greens, Here are some other ingredients that would be great to add in addition to, or in place of the additions listed above…toasted chopped pistachios, chopped dried apricots, chopped fresh cilantro or dill, crumbled feta cheese”

Ruth’s note: Barberries or zereshk are dried fruit from the barberry bush and commonly used in Iranian/Persian cooking. Think smaller, more tart cranberries... Wikipedia's definition.


earthmama said...

Can't wait to try this! After having a side dish at a local restaurant made from couscous, currants, red onion, and mint, I've been on the search for a recipe to replicate it. I'll be making this for the first time for a neighborhood picnic this weekend. Thanks for posting!

Ruth Daniels said...

I do hope everyone there likes it as much as everyone here ;-D

Archana said...

Hi ruth, this is lovely have to try this out sometime. I have couscous at home, now will try to get hold of some currants. I would like to invite you to my ONE DISH MEAL - Salad event that I am hosting. Would be glad to receive a recipe from you. The rules are in my website.