Couscous with Oven Roasted Tomatoes

September 10th, 2013


This past week I hosted 10 people for a Rosh Hashana Celebration (the Jewish New).  We typically serve roasted chicken and the same side dishes year after year…this year I wanted to do something different.  I figured, what better way to start a new year than with a new recipe!  I knew I was getting some plum tomatoes in my Alan’s Orchard Fresh box so I started to look through my new favorite cookbooks from my new favorite chef (Yotam Ottolenghi) for some inspiration.  There was SO many delicious recipes to choose from.  I decided to make his Couscous with Mograbiah with Oven Roasted Tomatoes (with a few Simply Beautiful Mom adjustments of course!).  It was as delicious as it is beautiful and yes, I did make the homemade labneh cheese too!




18, ripe plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise

3 Tablespoons olive oil

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 onions, cut in half and thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups Israeli Couscous (large couscous)

1 2/3 cups organic chicken stock

A pinch of saffron threads

1 1/2 cups couscous

1 tbsp charnushka seeds

3 1/2 ounces labneh (you could use soft goat cheese OR click here for recipe)

coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 300°F

Arrange the tomato halves, skin side down, on a baking sheet and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, the balsamic vinegar, and some salt and pepper. Place in the oven and bake for 2 and half hours, until the tomatoes have lost most of their moisture.


Place the onions in a large pan with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and sauté over high heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are a dark golden color.


Cook the Israeli couscous according to the package directions.


Bring the chicken stock to a boil with the saffron and a little salt. Place the couscous in a large bowl and add 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil and the boiling stock. Cover with plastic wrap and leave for 10 minutes.  Fluff with a fork to get rid of any lumps.


In a large bowl, mix together both types of couscous, tomatoes, onions and half of the charnushka seeds.  Add salt and pepper to taste.   Allow the dish to come to room temperature. To serve, arrange on a wide, shallow bowl and place the labneh (or goat cheese) on top, drizzle with remaining ½ tablespoons of olive oil, and finish with the rest of the charnushka seeds.

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