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Moroccan Inspired Beef and Veggie Couscous Bowl: ground beef, cauliflower, mushrooms and dried fruit on Israeli Couscous , topped with Caramelized Onions. Fast and delicious!

Moroccan Inspired Couscous Bowl with Ground Beef, Veggies and Caramelized Onions

Course Entree
Cuisine Moroccan
Author TheSpicedLife

Ingredients

  • 2 med-large onions–1/2 of one finely chopped, the other 1 1/2 thinly sliced
  • 2 T unsalted butter
  • salt to taste
  • 1-2 T olive oil
  • 6-8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t cumin
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1 t ras el hanout
  • 1/2 t ground ginger (not fresh)
  • 1/4 t allspice
  • 1 lb sliced crimini mushrooms
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 3-4 small-medium tomatoes, chopped (canned are fine too)
  • 1 head cauliflower, leaves and stem removed, broken into small florets
  • several handfuls of dried fruit of choice (we used tart cherries)
  • juice of 1 lemon, plus a 2nd lemon sliced into wedges for serving
  • Prepared couscous
  • chopped cilantro (I did not have optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat a large non stick skillet over medium heat. Add the butter and the thinly sliced onions. Sprinkle with salt. Once they are sizzling, lower the heat. Basically you are going to caramelize these onions while you cook the rest of the meal, so keep an eye on them, tossing occasionally and turning down the heat as needed. By the end you will have turned the heat quite low, but in the beginning I like to let them get some color. Don't be afraid to splash some water on them if needed (1-3 tablespoons at a time) to prevent scorching or sticking.
  2. Heat a second large stainless steel skillet over another burner, medium high. Add and heat the oil. When it is shimmering, add the finely chopped onion with a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring, until they are light golden brown, maybe 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the spices and stir into the onions. Do not let them burn. Let them roast briefly, then add the mushrooms. If at this point, before the mushrooms have really started cooking, you are concerned about the spices burning, add 1-2 tablespoons of water, Also sprinkle the mushrooms with a pinch of salt.
  5. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms have released their water, about 5-7 minutes. Add the ground beef and break it up and stir it in.
  6. When the ground beef is browned, add the tomatoes and the cauliflower and toss. Sprinkle with some salt. Mix in the dried fruit.
  7. Bring to a boil, and then place a lid on the pan and turn the heat down very low to maintain a gentle simmer. Right now we are steaming the cauliflower. Leave it alone for about 7 minutes, and then check to see if the cauliflower is tender crisp.
  8. If not, let is steam a few minutes longer. Then remove the lid and raise the temperature to medium low. Cook for a few minutes to allow some excess moisture from the cauliflower to cook off and for the flavors to blend. Mix in the juice of one lemon and taste for more salt. If it is not aromatic enough, you can also add a little more of any (or all) of the spices. If you were not using ras el hanout, add a few grinds of black pepper.
  9. Toss with the prepared couscous and then when serving top with caramelized onions. Sprinkle some chopped cilantro on top if you have it. Serve with a wedge of lemon.