What to CookCouscous

Pearl Couscous with Roasty Roots, Chickpeas, and Pepitas

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Every Monday and Wednesday, we'll announce a new Wildcard winner: a recipe that may not have been entered in (or won) a contest, but a recipe that we've tested and loved.

Today: The star of your next potluck -- or brown bag lunch, or dinner party.

Pearl Couscous from Food52 

WHO: Cristinasciarra is a writer, cook, food blogger, and avid Food52er living in Brooklyn.

WHAT: Your new favorite brown bag lunch -- and holiday side dish.

HOW: Cook your couscous in stock, and roast those roots. Then toss with chickpeas, herbs, goat cheese, and pepitas.

WHY WE LOVE IT: This couscous has everything we want in a dish; it's creamy, crunchy, tangy and herby, and those roasty roots give it that touch of sweetness. We think that this would make the perfect lunch -- but we also see it as a potluck side dish, or the star of a vegetarian dinner.

Pearl Couscous with Roasty Roots, Chickpeas, and Pepitas by cristinasciarra

Serves 8

1 bunch of carrots
1 sweet potato
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Sea salt, black pepper
2 garlic cloves
2 cups Israeli (pearl) couscous
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons pumpkin seed oil (or olive oil)
1 small red onion, minced
1 1/3 cup chickpeas
4 ounces crumbly goat cheese
2 teaspoons za'atar
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photo by Ryan Dausch

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Tags: Grains, Weeknight Cooking, Wildcard Winners, Everyday Cooking