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Sweet Couscous
From The Spice of Vegetarian Cooking (Canada, UK), by Martha Rose Shulman.


2 cups couscous
3 cups water
1-3/4 cups raisins
boiling water to cover
2 Tbsp butter
1 onion, chopped
4 Tbsp slivered blanched almonds
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
2 Tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground ginger
sea salt to taste
3 Tbsp honey
2 oranges, peeled, white membranes removed, chopped


Place the couscous in a bowl and pour on the water. Let sit while you prepare the remaining ingredients.

Place the raisins in a bowl and pour on boiling water to cover. Let sit 15 minutes, then drain and retain the soaking water. Add water to measure 2 cups.

Heat the butter in a heavy-bottomed, lidded saucepan, in the bottom of a couscoussiére or a flame-proof tagine. Sauté the onion over medium-low heat until it begins to turn golden. Add the raisins, almonds, dried apricots, spices, honey, and soaking liquid from the raisins. Cover and simmer 25 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile rub the couscous between the palms of your hands, then place in the top part of the couscoussiére or in a steamer above the simmering sauce and steam 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a platter and toss with the sweet, spicy sauce and the oranges. Serve at once.

Yield: Serves 8 generously

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