Crispy Cod & Spiced Couscous
with Acorn Squash & Rainbow Chard
- Time20-30 mins
Spice blends are an easy way to achieve rich, complex depth of flavor. In this recipe, we’re using ras el hanout, a traditional Moroccan blend that features a delicious mosaic of warming Middle Eastern spices. We’re infusing couscous and sprinkling sweet and nutty acorn squash with the ras el hanout, and serving both with chickpea flour-crusted cod, rainbow chard and sweet golden raisins. Garnished with mint, this meal redefines cold-weather comfort food with each layered, aromatic bite.
1-Inch Piece Ginger
TbspRas El Hanout
- Slotted Spatula
- Nonstick Pan
- Sheet Pan
- Small Pot
- Wooden Spoon
- Cutting Board
- Prep Bowls
- Chef’s Knife
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tips & techniques
It takes a delicate hand to create a golden raisin. Unlike their purple counterparts, which are made by allowing grapes to dry out in the sun for a few weeks, golden raisins require a precisely calibrated indoor drying process, involving strictly controlled temperature and humidity levels. It’s worth it, though, for the delicious result: a much fruitier and lighter flavor than regular raisins, as well as a beautiful golden color.
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1Prepare the ingredients:
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Using a sturdy knife, cut off and discard both ends of the squash; halve lengthwise, then scoop out and discard the pulp and seeds. Cut the squash into ½-inch-thick pieces. Using a peeler, remove the lemon rind, avoiding the white pith; mince the rind to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter and deseed the lemon. Peel and mince the ginger. Thinly slice the chard leaves and stems, keeping them separate. Pick the mint off the stems; discard the stems.
2Roast the squash:
Place the squash on a sheet pan; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and half the ras el hanout. Toss to thoroughly coat. Arrange the seasoned squash in a single, even layer. Roast, flipping halfway through, 20 to 22 minutes, or until browned and tender when pierced with a fork.
3Cook the couscous:
While the squash roasts, in a large pot, heat 1 cup of water to boiling on high. Once boiling, stir in the couscous and remaining ras el hanout; season with salt and pepper. Cover and remove from heat. Let stand 5 to 7 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed. Stir in the lemon zest and the juice of 2 lemon wedges; season with salt and pepper to taste.
4Cook the vegetables & finish the couscous:
In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the chard stems and ginger; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until softened and fragrant. Add the chard leaves, raisins and 2 tablespoons of water; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 5 minutes, or until the chard leaves have wilted. Stir in the juice of the remaining lemon wedges; transfer to the pot of cooked couscous. Stir to thoroughly combine. Set aside in a warm place. Wipe out the pan.
5Coat & cook the cod:
Pat the cod fillets dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper on both sides. Coat 1 side of each seasoned fillet in the chickpea flour (tapping off any excess). In the pan used to cook the vegetables, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the fillets, coated sides down. Cook 3 to 5 minutes on the first side, or until golden brown. Flip and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Remove from heat.
6Plate your dish:
Divide the roasted squash and finished couscous between 2 plates. Top with the cooked cod fillets. Garnish with the mint (roughly chopping just before adding). Enjoy!