Recipe Flop: Israeli Couscous with Pistachios and Apricots

I have to say that I’m probably one of the few Veggies out there {reluctant or otherwise} that does not love Veganomicon. I want to like it. Really. I do. But have only made one recipe that we liked out of 10 or 12. And those aren’t great odds.

I tried to make the Israeli Couscous with Pistachios and Apricots a few nights ago. It uses all ingredients that we like – pistachios, apricots, israeli couscous. How could it be bad? I mean, it certainly looked beautiful.

We found out rather quickly, that looks can be deceiving. It was actually a little comical how bad it was. We both tried really hard to like it. The Hubster suffered through about 5 bites with a very quizzical look on his face. Each bite becoming a bit more painful than the next until he finally had to put his spoon down and say that he didn’t like it.

I didn’t mind it as much but certainly didn’t want to save the remaining couscous for leftovers. Thank goodness for small miracles: we didn’t have enough couscous for the full recipe so I had to cut it in half.

In any case, here’s the recipe we used. Hopefully you enjoy it a bit more than we did.

Israeli Couscous with Pistachios and Apricots


  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cups israeli couscous
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1-2 pinches black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 lime, zest of
  • 1/8 cup mint, fresh and chopped and divided
  • 1/4 cup dried apricot, chopped to raisin size
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, shelled
  • 1/2 lime, juice of
  • 1-2 tsp sugar


  1. Heat a large heavy bottomed skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic to the pan and saute for 1 minute.
  2. Add the couscous, raise the heat to medium, and stir constantly for 4 to 5 minutes until lightly browned.
  3. Add the water, cumin, cardamom, pepper, salt, sugar and lime zest.
  4. Raise the heat and bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat to low and cover. cook until most of the water has been absorbed.
  6. Add 1 tablespoons of the mint, and the apricots, pistachios, and lime juice.
  7. Stir, cover again, and cook for 5 more minutes.
  8. Fluff the couscous with a fork, garnish with the remaining mint, and serve.


  1. The meal had a strange aftertaste to it. I think the culprit was the Cumin and would probably reduce the amt by half if I was going to make this again.
  2. I would also likely use vegetable stock instead of water to add a richer flavor to the dish.
  3. Our lime was a little lifeless and didn’t have a very strong flavor. Not sure how much of an impact this had. But wanted to mention it.

*If you do try this recipe, or have made it and liked it, please please please tell me what I’m missing. Or did wrong. Or a needed tweak that would help it out. Please, I beg of you!