Spicy Couscous with Cauliflower, Garbanzos and Sultanas

Spicy Couscous with Cauliflower and Garbanzos
Teresa Blackburn
  • Yield: 10 servings

We love how roasting makes cauliflower caramel-sweet, yet meaty. Hearty and eye-appealing, this couscous could easily serve as a main dish.


1large head cauliflower, cut into florets
Olive oil
Black pepper
Roasted Red Pepper Sauce:
2 red bell peppers, cut into halves, seeds removed
1/2medium onion, cut into chunks
3 garlic cloves
Olive oil
Black pepper
1cup couscous
1/2teaspoon salt
1cup boiling water
1tablespoon olive oil
1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1/2teaspoon ground coriander
1/2teaspoon ground cumin
1/2cup sultanas


  1. Preheat oven to 450F.
  2. To prepare the cauliflower: Place cauliflower pieces onto a baking sheet and brush with olive oil. Sprinkle salt and black pepper over the pieces. Roast until caramelized, about 15 minutes.
  3. To prepare the Roasted Red Pepper Sauce: Brush red pepper halves with olive oil and place on baking sheet. Brush onion chunks with olive oil and place next to pepper halves. Coat garlic cloves with olive oil and place underneath pepper halves. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Roast (at 450F) until the pepper skins get blackened and blistered—about 15 minutes.
  4. Let cool and remove skins.
  5. Place roasted peppers, onions, garlic and any residual oil into a food processor fitted with a swivel blade. Add ¼ teaspoon (or less) of cayenne, if desired. Process until smooth.
  6. To prepare the couscous: Place couscous and salt in a large bowl. Stir in 2 cups boiling water. Immediately seal with plastic wrap and let it sit, undisturbed for 10 minutes. Remove plastic wrap and fluff with a fork.
  7. Heat olive oil in a skillet. Stir in garbanzos, coriander and cumin. Cook 2 minutes—long enough to coat the beans with spice. Remove from heat and toss into bowl with couscous.
  8. Add sultanas to the couscous mixture and toss until well combine.
  9. To serve: In a wide, shallow bowl (like a pasta bowl), make a bed of spiced couscous. Arrange roasted cauliflower pieces on top of the couscous. Spoon warm roasted red pepper sauce over the cauliflower florets and serve.

Recipe courtesy of Nancy Vienneau and the Third Thursday Potluck Club