1In a medium saucepan over MEDIUM heat, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the minced shallots and sautè until the shallots are translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
2Add the vegetable or chicken broth, saffron threads, and the remaining butter. Bring to a boil.
3Slowly stir in the couscous and then remove the saucepan from the heat. Cover and set aside for 5 minutes.
4Transfer the cooked couscous to a serving platter or bowl. Fluff with a fork. Stir in the sugar, orange flower water, ground cinnamon, drained raisins, dates and apricots. Garnish with the toasted slivered almonds. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. If desired, garnish with fresh cilantro or fresh parsley (flat leaf/Italian in this case).
Can be served hot as a side dish or used as a stuffing for poultry or pita wraps, for example.