Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Light & Flavorful Dinner

    I got a text message from Tim yesterday afternoon letting me know he was having a late lunch and asking me to plan for a light dinner.  What I put together was definitely light, but big on flavor.  It's amazing how roasting foods can bring out such complex and deep flavors.  And I just love roasting foods because it's so easy and hands off.  My easiest dinners involve roasting.  A 30 minute meal, this dish is so simple, yet so good.  I'm pretty sure it's going to become a go-to meal for me.  If I don't forget about it, which I often do with new recipes I try.  ;-)

Roasted Chickpeas, Cauliflower, and Tomatoes with Herbed Couscous 

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
2 cups cauliflower florets, cut into small pieces
1 (15 1/2 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
10 1/2 ounces super sweet yellow cherry tomatoes (if you can't find these, regular cherry tomatoes will work)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 cup couscous
1 1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons vegan margarine or butter, optional
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons golden raisins, optional

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly oil a baking sheet.

Put the cauliflower, tomatoes, and chickpeas in a medium bowl.  Add oil, oregano, salt, and lemon juice.  Toss to coat everything evenly.  Place on the oiled baking sheet and spread out so nothing is overlapping.  Roast in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, until vegetables are starting to brown and tomatoes are starting to burst.

When there are approximately 10-15 minutes left in roasting time, start your couscous.  Allow water to boil.  Add couscous, oregano, lemon juice, and vegan margarine, if using.  Stir, then cover and allow to simmer 2-3 minutes until water is absorbed.  Fluff couscous with a fork and allow to sit for five minutes before serving.  Add golden raisins just before serving.

The vegetable portion makes 3-4 servings, while the couscous makes 4.  I had a little couscous leftover, but we ate up all the chickpeas and veggies.  I cannot even tell you how delicious these little cherry tomatoes were.  They burst in your mouth with tremendous flavor.  If you see the "super sweet yellow cherry tomatoes" in your grocery store, I highly recommend you give them a try!

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