My friend Sue recently had a birthday, we’ll just say she’s nifty and it doesn’t seem possible that her age ryhmes with nifty. Her girlfriends planned a great party- an al fresco dinner on a Boulder creek beach; then cake and champagne on a party bus a top Flagstaff Mountain.
My contribution was a fresh orange juice and bahrat marinated tenderloin of pork and a large couscous with loads of roasted vegetables. I love Middle Eastern couscous (aka Israeli or Jordanian couscous).
The difference in this couscous, which is also known as maftoul is that it is made from bulgur and flour and it is larger in size, compared to Moroccan couscous. For the party, I cooked it the way they do in Jordan and it was fantastic!
2 cups Middle Eastern couscous
1/4 cup and then another cup Spanish style olive oil or your favorite fruity oil
3 cups vegetable broth, chicken broth or just water, heated
1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed
1 bag frozen baby peas
1 large globe eggplant, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 large summer squash, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 large zucchini dicced into 1/2 inch cubes
2 pints assorted colored cherry tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large shallow pan heat about 1/4 cup of olive oil. Add the couscous and shake pan and cook it until the couscous starts turning golden brown.
Add the hot stock or water, and bring to a boil. Cook for 15 minutes then remove from heat, add the frozen peas and garbanzos and cover for 5 minutes. While the couscous is cooking, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Salt and pepper the eggplant and the add some oil and coat is well. Place a piece of parchment on a baking sheet and spread the eggplant out in an even layer. Place in the oven and cook until the eggplant is golgen brown and soft to touch. Remove from oven and repeat with the summer squash and zucchini, roasting each individually. Once the couscous is cooked, place into a large platter and season with salt and pepper. Stir well. Now add all the roasted vegetables. Toss them all well. Adjust seasonings and then add the cherry tomatoes.
I served the grilled pork loin thinly sliced on top of the couscous so the juices of the meat mixed in with the couscous.