Sunday, July 10, 2011

Moroccan Chickpea and Pumpkin Curry

A few weeks ago I decided I wanted to have a try at Moroccan cooking, after being inspired by a stall at the farmer's market I go to weekly. Moroccan cooking is fresh and flavoursome, with different textures and ingredients than I am used to. According to Wikipedia, the spices in Moroccan cooking are centered around cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, ginger, paprika, coriander and saffron. Most of my curries tend to take an Indian angle, so it was good to try something different. I was very happy with the outcome and loved the sweetness the fruit added. This is my attempt at changing out my standard Indian version of a chickpea and pumpkin curry to something a bit different...

Moroccan Chickpea and Pumpkin Curry on Couscous

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 - 1/2 tsp chilli powder
1 cup cooked or tinned chickpeas
1/2 of a small pumpkin, cubed (around 2 cups)
1 tin chopped tomatoes
Approx 1/2 cup water
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup dried apricots
1/4 cup almonds

1 cup dried couscous
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cumin
Sprinkle of chilli powder
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 cup sultanas or raisins
1 cup boiling water
Fresh coriander

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Fry garlic and onion in olive oil until soft. Add spices and fry gently until they start to smell amazing. Add chick peas and pumpkin and stir until well covered with spices. Add tinned tomatoes, lemon juice, dried apricots and enough water to make a sloppy sauce. Cook for a few minutes until bubbling then transfer mixture to a lidded casserole dish and place in oven. Cook for around half an hour or until pumpkin is soft. If sauce is too sloppy, remove lid for last 10 minutes of cooking time.

While curry is cooking, prepare the couscous. Place dried couscous in a bowl with spices, sultanas and lemon juice. Add boiling water, stir, then place a plate over the bowl to keep in the steam. Leave for 5-10 minutes to hydrate. After couscous has absorbed all the water, fluff with a fork and stir through fresh chopped coriander.

To serve, dish curry over top of couscous and sprinkle with roughly chopped almonds and more fresh coriander if desired. Enjoy!

Serves four.

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