Friday, April 25, 2014

Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

For a quick and easy weeknight meal, try this couscous dish featuring roasted cherry tomatoes and pine nuts. 

Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts | Taste As You Go
Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

I don't know about you guys, but the warmer weather is making me want to spend less time in the kitchen and more time outside soaking in the sunshine. Of course, the food blogger in me is desperately trying to focus on developing new recipes and sticking to my writing schedule, so I'm sure you imagine what the internal debate going on in my head sounds like. At any rate, if you see me relying more and more on cookbooks and other blogs for recipe inspiration, then you'll know why.

Step-by-Step Vegetarian: The Perfect Guide to Meat-Free Meals | Parragon Books
Step-by-Step Vegetarian: The Perfect Guide to Meat-Free Meals | Parragon Books
This recipe for Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts was inspired by a recipe I found in Step-by-Step Vegetarian and comes together in less than 30 minutes, so it's a perfect meal for a busy weeknight.

Whole Cherry Tomatoes | Taste As You Go
Whole Cherry Tomatoes

You'll want to start with a pint of whole cherry tomatoes. Give them a good wash and then place them in a baking pan with some olive oil to roast for 10-12 minutes.

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes | Taste As You Go
Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Roast the tomatoes until they are soft to the touch and the skins have burst. After removing them from the oven, allow them to rest for 5 minutes before combining with the remaining ingredients.

Pearl Couscous | Taste As You Go
Pearl Couscous

Meanwhile, prepare the pearl couscous (also known as "Israeli couscous") so it's ready to go when the tomatoes are finished.

Toasted Pine Nuts | Taste As You Go
Toasted Pine Nuts

Fresh Mint | Taste As You Go
Fresh Mint

Fresh Lemon | Taste As You Go
Fresh Lemon

To assemble, transfer the cooked couscous to a large bowl and add the roasted tomatoes with their juices. Add toasted pine nuts, coarsely chopped fresh mint, and the zest and juice from one lemon. Toss everything until evenly mixed and check the seasoning, adding salt, pepper, and extra-virgin olive oil to taste.

Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts | Taste As You Go
Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts

That's all there is to it!

Stephen and I ate this as a stand-alone dinner, but you could certainly serve the couscous as a side dish with some grilled chicken or fish. Plus, if you double the recipe, you'll have plenty of leftovers for lunches later in the week!

Pearl Couscous with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Pine Nuts
Yield: 4 servings | Printable Recipe

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup pearl couscous, uncooked
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint, coarsely chopped
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Place the tomatoes and 1 tablespoon olive oil in a baking dish. Toss until the tomatoes are coated and roast for 10-12 minutes. The tomatoes should be soft to the touch and the skins should burst. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the couscous and cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the water to the couscous and bring to a boil.
  5. Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat to bring the water to a rolling boil. Cook the couscous for 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain any excess water and pour the cooked couscous until a large bowl.
  6. Add the roasted tomatoes to the couscous. Add the toasted pine nuts, mint, lemon juice and zest, and remaining olive oil. Toss all of the ingredients together gently. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper, to taste.
  7. Serve warm.
Recipe by Michelle Rittler | Taste As You Go // Adapted from Adapted from Step by Step Vegetarian: The Perfect Guide to Meat-Free Meals

Taste As You Go Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of Step by Step Vegetarian: The Perfect Guide to Meat-Free Meals at no cost to me. I did not accept monetary compensation for this post; however, this post does contain affiliate product links. Clicking on the links may result in my being paid a commission based on product sales. Regardless of commission, all opinions expressed in this post are my own. 

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