Spiced California Raisin-Honey Couscous with Yogurt-Rum Sauce

Dennis Deel and Jenny Thompson, Healthy Recipe Award 2005 Coast-to-Coast Recipe Contest
Chock full of fruits and whole grains.




    • 1/2 cup California golden raisins
    • 1/2 cup California natural raisins
    • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
    • 2 teaspoons rum extract
    • 1 cup water
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 1 bag spiced tea*
    • 3/4 cup plain couscous**
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
    • 1 can (15 ounces) Mandarin orange slices, drained
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint


    • 1 carton (6 ounces) custard-style vanilla yogurt
    • 3 tablespoons reserved liquid from couscous
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamon
    • 8 mint sprigs; for garnish


    Measure raisins and orange juice into small saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat and boil 1 minute. Stir in rum extract and remove from heat; cover and set aside.

    Combine water and honey in a medium saucepan; add tea bag and bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly to infuse tea. When water just begins to boil, squeeze tea bag as dry as possible and discard. Stir in couscous; remove from heat. Cover and let stand as directed on package, at least 5 minutes. Then, stir in cinnamon and almond extract with a fork. Add raisins and blend well. Drain any remaining liquid and reserve for sauce. Very gently fold in orange slices. Cover and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Meanwhile, mix yogurt, reserved liquid and cardamon together in small bowl until smooth and creamy. Cover and chill.

    To serve, mix chopped mint into couscous. Divide and spoon one-half of couscous into 8 ramekins or custard cups. Drizzle each with 1 teaspoon sauce and divide remaining couscous evenly on top. Then, drizzle each with 1 to 2 teaspoons additional sauce. Garnish each bowl with mint leaves and store in refrigerator until ready to serve.

    Chef Notes: Celestial Seasonings’ Bengal Spice tea and Near East brand couscous preferred.

    Mom’s bread pudding had tons of raisins and plenty of hard sauce – and calories. This recipe is a healthy nod to that southern dish.

    Nutrition Facts Per Serving

    Calories 210 (3% from fat); Total Fat 1g (sat 0g, mono 0g, poly 0g, trans 0g ); Cholesterol 0mg; Protein 4g; Carbohydrate 49g; (Dietary Fiber 2g; Sugars 30g; ); Iron 1mg; Sodium 20mg; Calcium 62mg; Potassium 270mg

    This recipe is found in the following categories:

    Special Diet

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