Sweet couscous is served as the final savory dish of a banquet. More expensive nuts - pistachios and pine nuts - are often used along with traditional almonds.
1/2 cup combined pistachio nuts, pine nuts and blanched almonds
1/4 cup dried apricots
1 1/3 cup couscous grains
1/4 cup sugar (super fine or caster if possible)
3 TBS unsalted butter, softened
2 TBS sugar (extra)
1/2 tsp Vietnamese Extra Fancy Cinnamon powder
1 1/2 cups hot milk
fresh mint to garnish (optional)
Preheat oven to 315 degrees. Spread the nuts on a baking tray and bake for about 5 minutes (until slightly golden). Allow to cool, then roughly chop and place in a bowl. Slice the apricots into matchstick-sized pieces. Add to the bowl of nuts and toss to combine.
Put the couscous and sugar in a large bowl and cover with 1 cup boiling water. Stir well, then add the butter and a pinch of salt. Stir until the butter melts. Cover with a towel and set aside for 10 minutes. Fluff the grains with a fork and toss in half the fruit and nut mixture.
To serve, pile the warm couscous in the center of a platter. Arrange the remaining nut mixture around the platter. Combine the extra sugar and the cinnamon in a small bowl and serve separately for sprinkling. Pass around the hot milk in a pitcher for guests to help themselves.