- 1 1/3 cups couscous, preferably whole wheat
- 1 to 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 can (28-ounce) tomatoes, with juice, pulsed a few times in a food processor or mini processor
- Pinch of sugar
- Salt to taste
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 bunch (about 3/4 pound) black kale, stemmed and washed thoroughly
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (optional)
- Begin heating a saucepan full of water for the kale. Put the couscous in a bowl, add salt to taste, and if desired, 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Stir or rub between your fingers to distribute the oil (with the oil the couscous is a little fluffier, but you can omit this step). Cover with ½ inch of warm water or stock, if you have some. Let sit while you prepare the tomato sauce. Stir every once in a while to fluff.
- Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil over medium heat in a wide skillet or saucepan and add the garlic and red pepper flakes. As soon as the garlic begins to smell fragrant (30 seconds to 1 minute), add the tomatoes, sugar, and salt and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring often, until thick and fragrant, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, taste and adjust seasoning.
- By now the water in the pot will be boiling. Add salt to taste and the kale. Blanch for 3 to 4 minutes, until tender but still bright. Using a skimmer, transfer to a bowl of cold water. Drain and squeeze out excess water. Chop medium-fine and stir into the tomato sauce, along with the chickpeas and cilantro. Keep warm.
- Cover the couscous bowl with plastic wrap, pierce in a few places and microwave for 2 minutes at full power. Remove from the microwave carefully, as the bowl will be hot. Carefully remove the plastic and fluff. Cover again and return to the microwave for 1 minute. Serve the couscous topped with the tomato and kale sauce.
Yield: Serves 4