Pomegranate Glazed Root Vegetables with Israeli Couscous

January 4th, 2008  |  Published in All, Beets, Carrots, Fantastic Fruits, Grand Grains, Pomegranate, Sweet Potatoes / Yams, Veritable Vegetables, Weeknight Recipes

Roasted Root Vegetables with Pomegranate Syrup

Pomegranate Glazed Root Vegetables with Israeli Couscous

1 large beet, peeled, cut into 3/4 inch chunks
2 very small sweet potatoes or 1 large, peeled, cut into 3/4 inch chunks
3 carrots, peeled, cut into 3/4 inch chunks
2 T. Pomegranate Syrup, divided
3.5 T. Olive Oil, divided
1 c. Israeli couscous
1.5 c. vegetable or chicken stock.
1.5 t honey
.5 T white vinegar
1-2 T chopped parsley, or to taste
Salt & Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat, or brush lightly with olive oil. Toss root vegetable chunks with 1 T. Pomegranate Syrup and 1T olive oil until evenly coated. Spread vegetables on prepared baking sheet.
Roast for about 40 minutes, stirring after 20 minutes, or until vegetables can be easily pierced with a knife.

In the meantime, heat 1T. olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Add couscous to heated oil and toast for 3 minutes, stirring often. Add stock and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for another 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

Mix remaining 1 T. Pomegranate syrup, 1.5 T olive oil, honey, vinegar, and parsley in a small bowl.

Combine couscous and roasted vegetables in a serving dish. Drizzle about half of the sauce onto the mixture and stir to coat. Add more sauce until the entire pasta salad is coated evenly, or to taste.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

On a recent trip to the Rainbow Grocery in San Francisco, I made up my mind that I was finally going to purchase a bottle of pomegranate syrup which I had been eyeing since I first read about it on one of my favorite blogs. I had hesitated buying it not because it was particularly expensive (I think the bottle cost $4.39) but rather because I must be very judicious with my extremely limited cabinet space– I think I have something like 5 cubic feet for all of my dry-good storage. I make a conscious effort not to buy things that I’ll only use once or twice that will then sit on my shelves unused, collecting dust until I move into my next apartment. This holds true for kitchen gadgets too– if you visit my house you’ll find I have very few ‘specialized’ items, save for my pizza cutter (I love pizza), and my brand new shiny food mill (which proved its worth by churning out some of the lightest, fluffiest, lump-free mashed potatoes I’ve ever had while I was home for Christmas–expect a funnnn with foodmills post soon).

The pomegranate syrup completed its mandatory three week waiting period, and finally earned itself a place in my cabinet. Both sweet and sour, I can imagine many uses for this thick tasty ruby-colored reduction:

-Brush onto skin-on chicken breasts or thighs before roasting for a zingy glaze
-Mix with oil and a splash of white vinegar for a tasty salad dressing
-Pour a teaspoon into a glass of champagne for a twist on a Kir Royal
-Drizzle over vanilla ice cream with crumbled graham cracker
-Drizzle over oatmeal with toasted walnuts
-Use to season a rice pilaf along with toasted almonds and golden raisons
-Toss with root vegetables before roasting
-Mixed with mango or apricot preserves and some chipotle peppers in adobo for a delicious dipping sauce for shrimp

… just to name a few…

The recipe that originally caught my eye is for Muhammura, a spread made from roasted peppers, walnuts, pomegranate syrup, and other seasonings. Sounding a little too heavy after all the holiday eating I did in Seattle, a simple vegetable preparation would be the pomegranate syrup’s debut. Featuring beets, sweet potatoes, and carrots (some of my winter favorites, and also what I happened to have around–just about any root vegetable combination you like will work fine), this dish is filling but not heavy, and is good for a light dinner accompanied by a green salad and a glass of dry white wine.


PS–I’ve decided to experiment a little with the format of my recipe posts. I’m trying recipe first, commentary second, as opposed to commentary followed by recipe. Let me know if you like one way better than the other, or if you have any other comments or suggestions. Thanks!

« | Home | »

Most Popular