Celine Steen of  Have Cake Will Travel and Joni Newman of Just The Food have more tasty recipes on their blogs. Be sure to check out their amazing vegan cookbooks, especially The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions where this recipe comes from!

Sweet, spicy, and a little bit sour, with no added oil. Tastes scrumptious hot or cold. We prefer to eat it cold over a bed of baby spinach or steamed kale. Skip the optional tofu or tempeh, and you’ve made the dish soy free!

Jalapeño Cranberry Papaya Couscous

2 jalapeños, seeded and cored
2 cups (470 ml) water
1 cup (173 g) uncooked pearl couscous (Israeli couscous)
6 ounces (170 g) extra-firm tofu or tempeh, finely chopped (optional)
1/2 papaya, finely diced
1/4 cup (30 g) dried cranberries
1/4 cup (64 g) sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons (30 ml) fresh lemon or lime juice
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
Salt and pepper to taste

PREHEAT OVEN to 350°F (180°C, or gas mark 4). Roast jalapeños in oven for 30 minutes.

While jalapeños are roasting, prepare couscous by bringing 2 cups water to a boil. Add couscous, stir, remove from heat, cover, and let sit for about 20 minutes to absorb liquid. Fluff with a fork.

Once jalapeños are roasted and cool enough to touch, finely dice them. In a large mixing bowl, combine remaining ingredients with jalapeños and couscous.

YIELD: 8 side-dish servings

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