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Daily Archives: October 8, 2012

Meatless Monday Gets Fall Inspiration

Happy Meatless Monday, everybody!

We were really excited about this week’s edition of Meatless Monday, because we’ve always wanted to try Israeli Couscous, but just never gotten around to it.  Thanks to Heather, though, we finally had the perfect excuse to make the special trip to the bulk barn to buy some!

And of course, given our current Fall-themed obsession, what was included in our couscous dish?  Pumpkin, of course!  (Nothing is safe from the pumpkin takeover…)

Pumpkin Israeli Couscous Risotto!

This dish was extra-special, because since we are home right now for Thanksgiving, we got to share it with our family!  Now that we live away from home at school, we don’t get the opportunity to cook for our family as often as we used to, so whenever we come home we try to do something a little extra-special for them.

We’re not trying to toot our own horn here, but this risotto turned out amazingly well!  Our family loved it!  It was everything a risotto should be: creamy, chewy, and packed with flavour.

We love risotto.  In fact, it may just be one of our favourite side-dishes!  Unfortunately, we don’t make it very often because it is rather time-consuming.  And not the throw-it-in-the-oven-and-wait-forever-for-it-to-cook type time-consuming, but the stand-over-the-stove-and-stir-until-your-brain-goes-numb type of deal.  Ok, so maybe that’s a bit of an over-exaggeration, but risotto does require constant supervision, and isn’t exactly a 20 minute meal.

But our family is worth the extra prep-time 🙂

And of course, the deliciousness of this risotto speaks for itself!

Obviously,traditional risotto is made with arborio rice, and obviously we didn’t make ours that way! (we don’t think pumpkin is a traditional ingredient to add to risotto, either!)

But Israeli couscous works fantastically well in place of the rice, and pumpkin is good in everything, so it was a win in every corner!

So without further ado, we give you the recipe.  And then don’t forget to head over to visit Heather at Better With Veggies to check out what all the other participants managed to come up with!

Pumpkin Israeli Couscous Risotto

Time: 30-40 min

Serves: 6


1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 a large white onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 c. Israeli Couscous
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
3 c. low-sodium vegetable stock
1 c. pumpkin puree
1 tsp ground sage
1/2 tsp salt
pepper, to taste
1-2 tbsp Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast


Heat the olive oil of medium-high heat and add the onions and the garlic.  Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and translucent.

Add the couscous and cook, stirring frequently, for another 2-3 minutes.

Add the cider vinegar and cook until all of the vinegar has been absorbed.

Begin to add the stock, one cup at a time, stirring frequently.  Each time you add a cup of stock, cook and stir until almost all of the liquid has been absorbed before adding the next cup.  This is the time-consuming part of the process, but very necessary!

Once all of the stock has been added, stir in the pumpkin and seasonings, and cook until heated through.  Turn off the heat, stir in the Parmesan or nutritional yeast, and serve!


Step 1: Sweat your onions

Step 2: Stir in the couscous:

Step 3 and 4: Stir in the vinegar, then begin adding stock, stirring until fully absorbed:

As for the rest- we think you can handle it on your own 😉


Do you like risotto?  Do you enjoy cooking for your family?  What are your favourite things to cook for them?