Sunday, February 12, 2012

Couscous Salad

My friend, Julie, made this for an ATN staff retreat a couple of years ago and I loved it right away.

It's healthy, covers all food groups, can be changed up depending on what you have in the pantry, and it comes together in a few minutes.  What else do you need?

Here's the "official" recipe:

1 cup couscous
12 cup cherries (dried)
1 cup boiling water
5 tbsps olive oil (divided)
bell pepper (orange bell pepper cut in bite sized sticks)
onion (cut around its equator and cut into thin slices)
112 tsps ground cumin
12 tsp ground ginger
14 tsp ground cinnamon
black pepper (ground)
16 ozs chickpeas (drained)
14 cup fresh cilantro (chopped)
3 tbsps rice vinegar
3 tbsps orange juice concentrate (frozen orange juice concentrate thawed)
1place couscous and dried cherries in a med. bowl. add boiling water; immediately cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit until water is completely absorbed, about 5 minutes.
2meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. add peppers and onions, sauteing until tender, about 5 minutes, and seasoning with cumin, ginger, cinnamon, salt and pepper as they cook. add to couscous, along with chickpeas and cilantro.
3whisk remaining 3 tablespoons of oil with vinegar and orange juice concentrate. pour over salad. toss to coat. cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

From Yummly.

I'm not big on chickpeas, so I ditch those and add diced, cooked chicken breast.  If you have leftovers from dinner, this is a quick and easy way to use them up. Otherwise, I cook some in the slow cooker (bone in are juicier when cooked in the slow cooker).  When they are cooled, I chop them and throw them in the salad.

I've switched up the dried cherries for cranberries or apricots, again, depending on what I have in the pantry.  To make prep even easier, if you buy a package of pepper stir-fry vegetables and heat them up, you can save the time on the chopping and cooking.

It makes a nice size salad and is even better after a day or two of the juice soaking in. Make it at night and you have a couple of days of lunches.  It even makes a great side dish if you don't want to put the chicken into the salad.  Made as is, it's a great vegetarian meal.


No comments:

Post a Comment