this is another one of my go-to recipes when i am stuck with sub-par tomatoes.
i had them by the bowl full this summer
. it really came in handy this summer.
the flavors in this recipe are incredible. roasting brings out the best in the tomatoes, the vinegary bite of the olives matches perfectly with the tomatoes. i really like pearl (or Israeli) couscous. i am not a fan of the regular couscous - i think it disappears in a dish. the pearl sized holds up well against other ingredients. the tomato vinaigrette is bright and is a interesting use of the tomatoes. it helps get that tomato flavor into the couscous.
for other recipes to make when your tomatoes aren't the best, see...
spaghetti with grilled tomatoes and lemon
slow roasted tomato sauce
roasted tomato and olive couscous
Gourmet, September 2002
Makes 6 servings
For roasted tomatoes and dressing
4 cups tomatoes
4 large garlic cloves, left unpeeled
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup warm water
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 3/4 cups vegetable stock
2 1/4 cups pearl (Israeli) couscous
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup olives pitted and chopped (I used green olives - the original calls for Kalmata)
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
feta cheese for sprinkling on top
Roast tomatoes and make dressing:
Preheat oven to 250 degree F.
Quarter or halve tomatoes and arrange, cut sides up, in 1 layer in a large shallow (1-inch-deep) baking pan. Add garlic to pan (unpeeled), drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in middle of oven until tomatoes are slightly shriveled around edges, about 1 hour. Cool in pan on a rack 30 minutes. (I peel my tomatoes after they have been cooled)
Peel garlic and puree with oil, water, lemon juice, zest, salt, pepper, and 1/2 cup roasted tomatoes in a blender until dressing is very smooth.
Bring broth to a boil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan and stir in couscous, then simmer, uncovered, 6 minutes. Cover pan and remove from heat. Let stand 10 minutes.
Spread couscous in 1 layer on a baking sheet and cool 15 minutes. Transfer couscous to a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients, dressing, roasted tomatoes with their juices, and salt and pepper to taste.
Sprinkle with feta.
Do ahead: Roasted tomatoes, dressing, and couscous can be made 1 day ahead and kept separately, covered and chilled. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.
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