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Grab some friends...this makes a lot! You won't believe the amount of flavor you'll have in this vegetarian dish.
Serves 10 to 12
3 tomatoes4 tablespoons olive oil2 red onions, sliced1 tablespoon dry ginger powder1 teaspoon turmeric1 teaspoon black pepper1 teaspoon saffron threads1 tablespoon salt10 cilantro sprigs, tied together3 tablespoons tomato paste2 pounds couscous1/4 cup vegetable oil8 carrots, peeled and halved1 large turnip, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks1 cabbage, quartered1 small turban or other winter squash, unpeeled, 2-inch dice1 1/2-pounds zucchini2 teaspoons Harissa (chili condiment, found at stores such as Whole Foods)2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Caramelized onions10 small red onions, sliced2 tablespoons olive oil1 teaspoon ginger powder1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper1/2 teaspoon turmeric1 teaspoon saffron threads1 cup honey
Using a coarse grater, grate the tomatoes into a bowl, discarding the skin.
Place the olive oil in the bottom of a couscousiere over medium heat. Add the onions and the next 7 ingredients along with 12 cups water. Bring to a boil.
In the meantime, put the couscous, 2 teaspoons salt and the vegetable oil on a very large platter or in a large baking sheet. Rub together to coat the couscous with the oil. Separate the grains. Ad 1 cup water and let sit 10 minutes. Rake the grains and separate them so there aren't any lumps. Place the couscous in the top steaming basket of the couscousiere and let it steam uncovered until there is condensation and steam on the sides of the basket, about 20 minutes.
Dump the couscous onto a platter and if it's steamed enough, it should have the same shape as the steamer basket. Combine 1 1/2 cups water and drizzle over the couscous. Rake and separate any clumps. If it is too hot, wait a few minutes.
Add the carrots and turnip to the simmering broth. Put the couscous back into the steaming basket and steam again for 20 minutes.
Dump the couscous onto a platter and once again add water, this time just one cup. Rake and separate the clumps. Put the couscous back into the steamer. Add the cabbage, winter squash and zucchini. Place the couscous steamer onto the top and steam for 20 to 30 minutes.
For the onions, sauté the onions with olive oil, ginger, pepper, turmeric, saffron and cook for 20 minutes. Add the honey and stir together.
To serve, remove 2 cups of the broth from the couscous pot. Add Harissa to taste. Place in a pitcher. In another small pitcher, put two cups of the broth from the pot.
Place the couscous on a large platter and dot with butter. Toss until the butter melts. With a ladle, moisten the couscous with a few kadles of broth. Place the vegetables on the couscous and garnish with the caramelized onions. Serve with the two pitchers of broth.
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