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Author Notes: I created this recipe to take advantage of a spring abundance of mint, cilantro, and asparagus in the garden; it otherwise uses pantry ingredients and the only special purchase is a bit of goat cheese. It feeds four adults quite thriftily. The dressing that graces the couscous is inspired by the mint-cilantro chutney that frequently accompanies Indian chaat.
- 1 bunch mint leaves
- 1 bunch cilantro
- 2 serrano chilés
- 1 yellow onion
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 2 cups whole-wheat Israeli couscous
- 6 ounces goat cheese
- 1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 32 ounces chicken stock
- sea salt (to taste)
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- olive oil (for sautéing)
- Remove stems from mint and cilantro and put leaves in food processor (or blender.)
- Char serrano chilés briefly under the broiler, remove stems and add to food processor.
- Add 1/4 cup olive oil, apple cider vinegar, sugar, and a few good pinches of sea salt to the other ingredients in the food processor, and process to a smooth consistency. Taste, and add sugar and/or salt if necessary. Set aside.
- Prepare the whole-wheat Israeli couscous-- boil 32 oz chicken stock, add couscous and lower to a simmer. Cook to al dente.
- Thinly slice the onion and caramelize on stove top in a bit of olive oil.
- Add additional olive oil, and then sauté asparagus in pan with the caramelized onion and a bit of salt.
- Toss the couscous with the mint-cilantro dressing.
- Crumble the goat cheese.
- To plate, arrange couscous in 4 equal portions in the center of plates, top each with onions, asparagus, and crumbled goat cheese.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Fresh Herbs
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Dirt Cheap Dinner