As fall approaches on the calendar, it’s time to start thinking about apples. Hot apple cider, apple picking, and how about a Middle Eastern spin on this autumn classic? This simple, healthy recipe is like a warm apple pie folded into an Israeli favorite: couscous. Enjoy!
- 2-3 tablespoons butter
- 5 cups apples, peeled, cored, and cut into a small/medium dice
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups couscous*
- 2 cups water
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup sliced almonds, toasted
1. Place a skillet on the stove over medium heat and melt the butter. When the foam subsides, add the diced apples and stir to coat. Turn temperature slightly down and cook on medium-low heat for 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes to make sure the apples evenly cook. Add brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla to the apples and stir to coat. Cook for another 5 minutes. The apples should be soft but still hold their shape (not complete mush).
2. In a casserole dish, spread couscous out to an even layer. Cooking it in this type of dish will increase surface area and keep the resulting texture light and fluffy. In a saucepan, bring water, butter, sugar, and salt to a boil. Pour over couscous, stir briefly with a fork, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let sit 5 minutes. After the 5 minutes, remove the plastic wrap and fluff couscous with a fork – the butter should keep the grains separate and prevent any clumping.
3. In the same dish or another serving bowl, mix together the couscous with the apple mixture, and top with the toasted sliced almonds. Serve warm.
* Be careful not to use the tri-color type, which has spinach and tomato flavoring, or Israeli couscous, which is larger and requires a longer cooking time.
Serves 4 to 6