Couscous with Sweet Potato, Snap Peas and Mint

The sweet heat from the spiced sweet potato against the cool, refreshing mint and peas is a very summery combination – fantastic alongside some barbequed lamb or sausages. Also great on its own as a healthy lunch.

Feeds 4 as a side

Ingredients

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes

Olive oil

Sweet smoked paprika

Cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper

1 cup couscous

1 packet (approx. 160g) sugar snap peas

1 large handful mint

Method:

Preheat the oven to 400F / 200C / 190C Fan.

Add the cubed sweet potato to a baking tray and drizzle over a little olive oil. Sprinkle over a generous pinch of salt, pepper and paprika, and dust over a little cayenne – as much as you dare. Give the cubes a good mix around with your hands, then roast for 30 – 40 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the cubes are soft all the way through and slightly crisp on the outside.

Meanwhile, make the couscous by adding the dry couscous to a large bowl with small drizzle of olive oil, a good pinch of salt and pepper and 1 cup of boiling water. Cover the bowl with cling film or a large plate and leave to rehydrate. After about 5 minutes it will be ready – use a fork to give it a good fluffing up. Leave to one side while you deal with the peas and mint.

For the peas, simply top and tail, and cut in half on the diagonal. Use a basket steamer to steam the peas for 2 minutes, or until bright green but still with a bit of crunch. Remove the basket and rinse the peas briefly with cold water to stop the cooking. Leave to one side to drain for a few minutes. (Don’t worry if there’s still a little water left on the peas; the couscous will happily absorb it for you.)

Strip the leaves from the mint and chop roughly.

When you’re ready to assemble, simply tumble the sweet potato and peas in with the couscous and give everything a good stir. If the sweet potato is still piping hot, wait to add the mint otherwise it will wilt and turn black. When you’re ready to serve, sprinkle in most of the mint and give everything another good stir. Finally, sprinkle what’s left of the mint over the top, and serve.

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