Saturday, June 18, 2011

Middle Eastern Feast

Couscous is incredibly easy to put together and flavor in anyway you like. Form into small cakes and crisp up both sides for an added touch.

Herbed Couscous Cakes, Seitan & Potato Spiced Salad, Grilled Vegetables and Hibiscus Iced Tea

Herbed Couscous Cakes
2 cups vegetable broth
1 1/4 cup golden couscous
1 tbl ener-g egg replacer
3 tbl water
1 tbl vegenaise
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1/4 cup minced red onion
1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted pistachios
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp ground coriander
3 tbl extra virgin olive oil

Bring the broth to a boil. Pour in couscous and remove from heat. Let sit for 5 minutes then fluff with a fork. Whip the egg replacer and water together in a small blender or by hand until thick and fluffy, 3 minutes. Add the egg replacer and all remaining ingredients except oil to the couscous. Form into rounds and very gently saute in oil until golden brown on both sides, 5 minutes a side.

This salad is a take on the Chipotle Potato Salad I made recently, but with a spiced flare.
Spiced Seitan & Potato Salad
5 tbl extra virgin olive oil, divided
8 oz seitan, sliced thinly
5 dried apricots, small dice
3 scallions, minced
2 tbl apricot marmalade
1 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp dried coriander
1/8 tsp allspice
2 tbl fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro or parsley
juice of 1 orange
2 tbl toasted sesame seeds
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 lb fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise

Pan fry the seitan in 3 tbl olive oil until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl and add the apricots, scallions, marmalade, cumin, coriander, allspice, lemon juice, cilantro, orange juice, sesame seeds, salt and pepper.
Add the potatoes into a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Cook until tender, drain and mix in with the salad while still hot. Add the remaining 2 tbl of oil and toss. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.

Grilled Zucchini & Green Beans
2 zucchini, thinly sliced
4 oz green beans, ends trimmed
2 tbl extra virgin olive oil
1 tbl fresh lemon juice
1 tsp fresh lemon zest
1/4 tsp dried coriander
salt and pepper

Prepare a grill to medium high heat. Toss the vegetables in the oil, lemon juice, zest, coriander, salt and pepper. Grill until slightly tender with dark grill marks.

Hibiscus Iced Tea
8 cups water
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
14 hibiscus tea bags
1 small orange, thinly sliced

Bring the water and sugar to boil. Turn off the heat, add the tea bags and let steep for 10 minutes. Pour into a pitcher with orange slices and chill.

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