Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Moroccan Quinoa with Chickpeas and Raisins

I just want to say that I love Chef Michael Smith. I saw him two years ago at the Canadian National Exhibition. I didn’t really get to watch his demonstration as well or closely as I had hoped, because by the time we found him we ended up way at the back of the crowd. But anyway, we can always see him on TV! I came across a recipe of his in my search for Moroccan Couscous. Actually, I wanted to use quinoa but I knew finding a couscous recipe would be easy. I found Moroccan Couscous with Chickpeas and Raisins and decided to go with it.

I had to adjust a few things in this recipe to bring down the PointsPlus value, but it was pretty good. Perhaps a little bit too lemony though. Or maybe too orangy? I can't decide. I used only ½ a can of chickpeas for example, and cut back the amount of nuts and dried fruit. I used half fresh squeezed orange juice and half chicken broth, where the original recipe called for 2 cups of orange juice. I'm thinking I might just use all broth next time.

Make it vegan by using vegetable broth instead. Also, you can substitute couscous for the same PointsPlus value.

August 2010. CNE

I believe he was making chocolate chip cookies.

Moroccan Quinoa with Chickpeas and Raisins
4 Servings | PointsPlus per Serving: 11

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
½ a can of chickpeas (9.5oz), drained and rinsed well
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup dried apricots, sliced
Juice of 2 oranges (about 3/4 cup)
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 lemon, zest and juice
1/4 cup slivered almonds
¼ cup chopped cilantro or Italian parsley

Cook the onion, garlic and spices in the oil over medium-high heat for a few minutes until the onion starts to turn golden.

Add the chickpeas, quinoa, raisins, apricots, orange juice, chicken broth, lemon zest and juice, and season with salt and pepper. Give it a good stir.

Bring this up to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and put a lid on it. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the quinoa is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. If it seems too liquidy, cook it for a few minutes longer with the lid off.

Let it rest off the heat for 5 minutes before fluffing it up with a fork. Sprinkle the almonds and cilantro over top just before serving.

08/28/12 - Featured in DailyBuzz Food top 9 Cooking with Quinoa


  1. Mm, I love the idea of all of these warms spices combined with quinoa, in place of couscous. Creative!