Serves 8

Dried fruit is often used in North African cuisine to sweeten dishes, as it is in this colorful sweet, salty, and crunchy couscous salad. Liora Kushner seasons her couscous with turmeric, paprika, ground cumin, and caramelized onions.

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COUSCOUS SALAD

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 large Bermuda onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt, and more to taste
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups water
teaspoon turmeric
3 cups plain instant couscous
8 dried apricots, finely chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
4 dried figs, finely chopped
½ cup shelled, unsalted
pistachios, coarsely chopped
3 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
Black pepper, to taste

1. In a skillet over medium heat, heat
1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the butter and when it melts, add the onion and a generous pinch of salt. Cook for 30 minutes, stirring often, or until the onion is nicely browned. Stir in the paprika and cumin; set aside.

2. In a saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon salt, remaining 2
tablespoons olive oil, turmeric, and couscous. Stir until blended. Turn off the heat and cover the pan. Set aside for 5 minutes. With a fork fluff the couscous and transfer to a bowl.

3. Add the apricots, cranberries, figs, pistachios, celery, parsley, pepper, and onion. Toss well until evenly combined. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like.

CHICKPEAS

1 tablespoon olive oil
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup canned chickpeas

1. In a skillet over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the paprika and cumin and heat for 1 minute.

2. Lower the heat and add the chickpeas. Stir until the chickpeas are coated with the spice mixture. Cook 1 minute more. Sprinkle the spiced chickpeas over the couscous. Adapted from Liora Kushner