Moroccan Couscous with Seven Vegetables – Couscous Bidaoui


An authentic recipe for Moroccan Couscous with Seven Vegetables, the ultimate comfort food to enjoy with family and friends. Lamb, beef, or chicken is stewed with assorted veggies, then served atop a mound of light, fluffy steamed couscous. A rich broth seasoned with ginger, pepper and turmeric is poured over all or offered on the side.

Casablanca style Couscous with Seven Vegetables is my favorite variation of Moroccan couscous, especially when topped with a caramelized onion and raisin garnish called tfaya. A much-loved comfort food, many families serve it weekly for Friday lunch, when they’ll gather round a large communal dish like the one shown above.

Couscous with Seven Vegetables is also referred to as Couscous Bidaoui, in reference to the Arabic name for Casablanca, where this version of the dish originated.

The recipe here is as authentic as it gets. Meat or chicken is stewed with a variety of vegetables in ample broth generously seasoned with ginger, pepper and turmeric. Ideally, the stewing is done in the base of a couscoussier while the couscous grains steam above.

In place of fresh meat or poultry, dried meats such as gueddid can be used. This is especially common in the days following Eid Al Adha, or at certain other times of the year, such as the Day of Ashura.

If at all possible, avoid the temptation of using instant couscous and instead learn How to Steam Couscous, which is the way to go for light, fluffy couscous that’s perfect for absorbing the dish’s flavorful broth.

What Veggies Are in Couscous with Seven Vegetables?
Onions, carrots, pumpkin, zucchini, turnips, cabbage, and chickpeas are typically used in Moroccan couscous. But don’t be misled by the number seven in the dish’s name; more or fewer vegetables may end up in a particular cook’s version of couscous with seven vegetables.

For example, this recipe includes tomatoes, which break down with the onions to help make a rich broth. In the fall, we might add sweet potatoes to the mix—so good! And while potatoes aren’t traditional, some mothers may insist on adding a few for younger children.

In the winter and spring, fresh fava beans are a popular addition or replacement for chickpeas, and while in season, cardoons and bottle gourds might end up in the pot as well.

You can omit the meat for a vegetarian version, but do try to include the full variety of vegetables below, even ones you don’t like very much. They all work together to provide a rich, unique flavor to the broth. And who knows, you may just find that veggies you normally avoid actually taste quite nice when stewed this way!


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