roast vegetables with cous cous and harissa

serves 4

start preparation 1 hour ahead
cooking time:  40 mins

roast vegetables:
1lb skinned cherry tomatoes * (or ordinary ones)
1 small aubergine
2 medium courgettes
1 small bulb fennel or a yellow pepper
1 small red pepper
1 large onion
2 crushed cloves garlic
2ozs pitted black olives
1 heaped teaspoon capers
3 tablespoons olive oil
fresh basil leaves

one hour ahead, cut aubergine and courgettes into one-inch dice, toss in salt and leave for an hour to drain in a colander.

de-seed peppers and cut into dice.  Rinse salt off aubergine and courgettes, then dry them in a clean tea-towel.  Arrange all veg in a flat oven dish, then sprinkle on the garlic and torn basil leaves.  Coat all with oil and season with salt and pepper.  Place on high shelf in hot oven - Mark 7.  Cook about 40 mins, turning once or twice during cooking to ensure that they are evenly roasted and nothing is burning.  The veg should be brown around the edges, but not blackened.

harissa - mix together:

4fl ozs virgin olive oil
1 rounded teaspoon cayenne
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 heaped tablespoons tomato purée
4 tablespoons lime juice (2 limes)

10ozs medium cous-cous
18fl ozs vegetable stock
salt and pepper
4ozs goat's cheese or feta

pour boiling stock onto cous-cous and leave for five mins.  (I think it is wise to follow instructions on cous-cous packet - J. uses the microwave, which is another story.)

serve vegetables in one bowl and cous-cous sprinkled with broken-up feta cheese in another.  Serve harissa separately.  Since the harissa is quite hot, a bowl of plain yoghurt should be available for those who might otherwise catch fire.

*  to skin tomatoes, put them in a bowl and cover with boiling water.  leave 1 1/2 minutes, then drain off water and plunge tomatoes into cold water to prevent them from cooking any further.  Using a sharp knife, pierce skins and just slide them off in bits - it's a lot easier than it sounds.

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posted by sasha on 10 Feb 06 - 15749 views


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