Sweet Potato, Chickpea, and Chicken over Cous Cous

sp_cp_chick1One of my dear friends is in town this week for a conference and while we thought we might not get to fit in a visit at all, we’ve now had two nights in a row of hanging out–what a treat! This evening after work we met up downtown and spontaneously decided she’d come home with me and eat with us. Bonus treat! And to top it off, she surprised me with the most delightful of gifts – a beautiful new cookbook. I’d never heard of this one, but from the flip of the first page I was hooked. Stunning food styling and photography, perfectly presented healthy, fresh, seasonal recipes, and an overall philosophy about how to eat and cook healthy and why — without going nuts. The book is Quick. Easy. Healthy. Good Food Every Day by Callum Hann and Themis Chrissidis, and their central message is, “We don’t believe in health products, ‘superfoods,’ ‘diets’ or strict eating plans. We just believe in food…” YESSSSSS. Preach on, my people!

I opened the book and flipped through the recipes and basically was like, ‘yes,’ ‘yes,’ ‘yes.’ I want to make everything. I started with a recipe called Moroccan Sweet Potato, Chickpea, and Chicken Salad, but did a little tweaking to make it a heartier dinner and, because, I can’t help myself, really. You know me by now. Anyway, here you go.

WHAT YOU NEEDsp_cp_chick2
* 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
* 1 medium-sized red onion, quartered and cut into slices
* 15oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
* 2T olive oil, divided
* 1T paprika
* 1/4C raw pumpkin seeds
* 1/4C dried cranberries, cherries, raisins, or currants (I used a cranberry/cherry combo)
* 1-1.5lb chicken tenderloins, cut in half
* 1T ground cumin
* 1T grainy dijon mustard
* zest and juice of 1 large lemon
* handful of fresh parsley or cilantro leaves rough chopped
* whole wheat cous cous

WHAT TO DOsp_cp_chick3
Preheat the oven to 375F. Prepare a large and a small roasting pan, set aside.

Put the sweet potato chunks, onion slices, and chickpeas in a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil add the paprika and toss to coat. Pour into an even layer into the large roasting pan and roast 20 minutes.

Next, put the chicken pieces and the cumin in a bowl and mix to ensure all of the chicken is coated. Spray the smaller roasting pan with nonstick spray and then add the chicken to it. Place the pan in the oven for 10-15 minutes, just until cooked through.

Try to overlap the timing on both pans so that they finish at the same time. When the vegetable pan is ready, add the pumpkin seeds and dried fruit to the pan, and return to the oven for another minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the cous cous according to the package directions.

In a large serving bowl, whisk together the second tablespoon of olive oil, mustard, and lemon zest and juice. Add the vegetable mixture and the chicken and toss to combine.

Serve the chicken and veggies over cous cous. Garnish with the fresh chopped parsley.

It’s sweet but not too sweet, and warm and rich and deep in flavor. It’s hearty and filling, but still light and fresh. It’s easy, quick, beautiful, and totally family-pleasing. One recipe in, and I’m basically obsessed with this cookbook and these chefs. More please!


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