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Pearled Couscous Spinach Bowls with a Garlic Kick
A hearty and healthy warm salad. Make for four people, or make on the weekend and eat for the workweek (just keep the ingredients separated). Best warm but also good eaten cold for leftovers. It happens to be vegan too.
Short on time? How to make this recipe faster: 1) Use canned black beans 2) Grab store bought guac 3) Use your favorite salad dressing instead of making it from scratch (Green Goddess style dressing or anything that has a little heat to it would be great)
- Prep Time: 20
- Cook Time: 30
- Total Time: 50
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: salad
- Method: roasting
- About 5 cups spinach
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 1 cup dry black beans or 1 can of black beans
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 2.5 Tablespoons Texas Mojo or ½ Tablespoons chili flakes
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (dry) pearled couscous (I think pearled couscous works better than the smaller Moroccan style couscous for this dish)
- 2 ¾ cup vegetable broth (separated 1 cup, then 1 3/4 cup)
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1.5–2 Tablespoons Buffy’s Slayer Helper (our Garlic Lover’s Blend) or use 1 Tablespoon garlic granules plus another ½ teaspoon of salt
- 3 Tablespoons fresh parsley, minced (or use 1 1/2 Tablespoons dried parsley)
- 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
- 6–8 carrots, peeled and cut into the same size as the sweet potatoes
- 3–4 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons Buffy’s Slayer Helper (our Garlic Lover’s Blend) or 1 Tablespoon garlic granules and ½ teaspoon salt
- Salt and pepper
Dressing (or use your favorite dressing – Green Goddess style or anything that has a little heat to it would work well)
- 1/2 cup cashews
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 Tablespoon Texas Mojo (or 1 Tablespoon chili powder or a sprinkle or two of chili flakes)
- 4 Tablespoons olive oil
- 4 Tablespoons lemon juice (1–2 lemons)
- 1.5 Tablespoons agave
- Salt and pepper
- Hot water
Avocado Topping (or use your favorite store guac)
- 3 ripe avocados
- 3 Tablespoons of cilantro, chopped
- 1 ½ teaspoons lime juice
- Salt & pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400. Put cashews in a bowl and cover them with hot water. Soak for at least 20 minutes.
- Prepare the Beans. If Using Canned Black Beans: Rinse the beans and place in a pot with 2.5 Tablespoons Texas Mojo (or chili flakes), ½ teaspoon salt, 1 cup vegetable broth and ½ cup water. Simmer over medium low heat for 10 minutes stirring occasionally, adding a little water if needed. Remove from heat, crack some pepper to taste and set aside. If Using Dry Black Beans with Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker: Place (rinsed) dry black beans, 2 cups water, 1 cup vegetable broth, ½ teaspoon salt and 2. 5 Tablespoons Texas Mojo (or chili flakes) in the Instant Pot/pressure cooker. Stir and cook on high pressure/Instant Pot “beans” setting for 20 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally, then place beans in a bowl, crack some pepper to taste and set aside.
- Roast the Veggies. Toss the carrots and sweet potatoes in a bowl with olive oil and 1.5-2 Tablespoons Buffy Slayer Helper Garlic Blend (or 1 Tablespoon garlic granules and ½ teaspoon salt). Spread it out flat on a lightly oiled, tin-foiled baking sheet. Sprinkle generously with pepper and some salt and roast in the oven for 14-19 minutes until soft and slightly browned (time will vary based on how large your pieces are).
- Make the Couscous. While that’s roasting, grab a medium non-stick saucepan and add 1 ¾ cup veggie broth, pearled couscous and 1 Tablespoon of olive oil. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer for 4-6 minutes (uncovered) until most of the liquid is gone, stirring occasionally. When liquid is mostly gone, add 1 more cup of veggie broth, 1 teaspoon salt, 1.5-2 Tablespoons Buffy’s Slayer Helper (or 1 Tablespoon garlic granules plus another ½ teaspoon of salt). Bring back to a medium boil. Simmer for 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. When most of the water is gone, stir in minced parsley. Remove from heat and cover so it stays warm.
- Make the Avocado Topping. (Skip this step if you’re using store guac) Cut avocados in half, remove pits, scoop them out of the shell, sprinkle with about 1 ½ teaspoons of lime juice and a little salt, then top with cilantro and mash with a fork so it’s combined yet a little chunky.
- Make the Dressing. (Skip this step if you’re using a pre-made dressing) Drain cashews and toss in a blender with 2 garlic cloves, 1 Tablespoon Texas Mojo (or some chili flakes), 4 Tablespoons olive oil, 4 Tablespoons lemon juice and 1.5 Tablespoons agave and ¼ cup hot water. Blend on high until it’s smooth, adding a little hot water as needed. When you get a creamy consistency, sprinkle in a little salt and pepper to taste.
- Assemble the Bowls. Grab the plates and add spinach, drained black beans, pearled couscous and the sweet potatoes and carrots. Drizzle the dressing on, then split the tomatoes among the bowls. Top with a generous scoop of avocado and a few cracks of pepper.