Pam, a friend of our friends, made this dish for a Fourth of July dinner, while we were visiting them in Montana. She said that if she had known that we were Israeli, she would have made something else. But I’m glad she didn’t, because we all loved it – including my boys. It’s very simple and delicate but full of flavor.
Toasted Israeli Couscous With Pine Nuts, Currants & Parsley
- Olive oil
- ⅔ cup pine nuts – about 3½ ounces
- ⅔ cup finely chopped shallots
- 3 cups (16 oz) Israeli toasted couscous
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 bay leaves – fresh or dried
- 4 tablespoons currants or barberries – zereshk
- 3¾ cups vegetable broth – or water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Put 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add pine nuts and stir until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl.
- Put 4 tablespoons of olive oil in the same pan over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until golden, about 10 minutes. Add couscous, cinnamon stick, and 2 bay leaves and stir until couscous browns slightly, stirring often, about 5 minutes.
- Add broth and salt and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until couscous is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes.
- Stir in parsley and pine nuts (leave some on the side for garnish). Drizzle a little bit olive oil and season with black pepper. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish.