Walnut and broccoli cous cous : Paul West

Couscous and Tagine

I had the pleasure of meeting and cooking with Paul West of River Cottage this week at the Sydney Cooking School in Neutral Bay. The environment of the cooking school itself was one that greatly urges you to cook, and cook well. Combine that with the charming and rugged nature of Paul, and you’ve really no choice but to serve up something delicious.

We were brought together by the group, Nuts for Life, who recently began a campaign encouraging Aussies to grab a handful of tree nuts each day. As you may have guessed, our culinary direction featured nuts. But, to be honest, I was really surprised that the combinations worked so well together without being overly nutty.

The walnut and broccoli cous cous is light and full of flavour – the fresh herbs really are crucial, and the currants add something of a sweet surprise every few bites.

Combined with the pumpkin, pistachios and chickpeas with yogurt, mint and slivered almonds you have a dish bursting with Indian flavouring. Don’t miss out on the yogurt if you can help it – it complements the sauce beautifully.

So, if the extent of your nut cooking skills has yet to evolve beyond a dab of peanut butter in a satay dish, or a smattering of pine nuts in pesto, then take heed and try these great recipes put together by Paul West on behalf of Nuts for Life.

Paul West

Walnut and broccoli cous cous
Serves 4

200g cous cous, cooked
1 spanish onion, finely sliced
1 stick of celery, finely sliced
1 head of broccoli, steam finely sliced into little batons, florets finely chopped to resemble cous cous
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 lemon, juice and zest
30g handful of walnuts, lightly toasted and smashed a little
Small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
Small bunch of mint, roughly torn
Small bunch of chives
Small handful of currants
Splash of olive oil

1. In a fry pan that’s over a medium heat, fry off the onion, celery and broccoli stalk until they have all softened.
2. Next, add the finely chopped broccoli florets and the garlic and continue to cook until the florets are just starting to colour and the garlic is soft and aromatic.
3. Squeeze over the lemon juice, season with pepper and remove from the heat.
4. Fork the fried mixture through the cooked cous cous along with the herbs, walnuts, lemon zest, currants and a splash of olive oil. Enjoy as a salad by itself or as a herby side to a spicy tagine.

For the accompanying recipe, visit the next post below.
Pumpkin, pistachios and chickpeas with yogurt, mint and slivered almonds

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