Roasted Vegetables and Israeli Couscous in Meyer Lemon Thyme Vinaigrette

My three main food groups are definitely vegetables, beans, and grains. I love trying new permutations of them, while happily recalling the endless tree diagrams of my childhood education (and, of course, with regular forays into the areas of dairy and dessert!) This past weekend at the grocery store, I threw a bunch of things into my cart and figured I’d work out a meal when I got home. This dish is one of the things I came up with, but I wasn’t sure how it would turn out. Eric took one bite of it, grinned, and declared it delicious and highly blog-worthy, before I’d even asked him what he thought of it. I love him. So, without further ado, here it is!

I love Israeli couscous, a larger cousin to the regular kind, and it goes so well with tomatoes. It cooks just like pasta (and, in fact, it is a type of pasta), so just ten minutes or so of boiling will finish it, and then you can just drain it and serve.

I borrowed Ottolenghi’s vegetable roasting times from his delicious tart, putting the sweet potato in first, and then adding the zucchini, which cooks much faster. Genius!

For the vinaigrette, I juiced one Meyer lemon and then added an equal amount of olive oil, about 1/4 cup. Then I seasoned it with tons of fresh thyme, salt and pepper. I mixed all the ingredients together, and it was ready to serve. I’m so glad it was a hit!

Roasted Vegetables and Israeli Couscous in Meyer Lemon Thyme Vinaigrette

16 oz. Israeli couscous
2 sweet potatoes, cubed
3 zucchini, cubed
1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
Juice of one Meyer lemon (or a regular lemon)
1/4 c olive oil
1/4 fresh chopped thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

(As a side note, these were the vegetables that I happened to have on hand, but many others would be great here as well, such as eggplant or cauliflower.)

-Heat oven to 450 degrees. Roast cubed sweet potatoes for 12 minutes. Add cubed zucchini and roast for 12 more minutes. Set aside.
-Boil Israeli couscous in water until tender, about ten minutes. Drain and set aside.
-In a large bowl, whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, salt and pepper to taste.  Add the Israeli couscous and roasted vegetables, topping with sliced tomatoes. Stir well, so that the vinaigrette coats them. Serve warm.

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