Couscous is a fun word to say. Couscous. I can’t help but make a kissy face while saying it. Couscous. Koooskooos. I like couscous.
The first time I ever actually ate this grain-like pasta was back in college when a Middle Eastern friend invited me over for a home cooked dinner. I’m guessing his college-level cooking skills were lacking because my first introduction to Middle Eastern cuisine was under seasoned baked chicken and plain couscous cooked in water. He said that’s what he grew up eating and I felt bad for him. I feel even more bad for him now that I know more about the luscious flavors associated with that part of the world.
I definitely liked the texture of the couscous, though. I find it a lot more pleasing than rice. Plus, couscous doesn’t really lose it’s texture once it gets cold. Unlike rice which just gets hard and weird. Kind of like my college friend, now that I think about it. I don’t think he had any body fat but then again, I’d rather be insulated than go without flavor.
Flavor is something that this salad is not lacking. Don’t let the boring appearance fool you. While you can’t see the amazing citrus dressing on here, you can taste it. It has such a fresh sweetness to it that I am still craving it even though I just ate the last of the leftovers for lunch today.
That’s another thing that I love about this couscous salad: it was just as good warm as it was at room temperature and cold. I think the flavor got a bit better the longer it sat but it so good when I first made it as well.
So, if you haven’t picked up on it yet, I love this salad. Like, a lot. I will likely make it again this weekend just to have on hand for snacking and for lunches. This is certainly a tasty way to get a serving or 2 of veggies. 🙂
- ½ c lime juice
- ¼ c lemon juice
- ¼ c honey
- ¼ c + 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 c low-sodium chicken broth
- ½ c water
- 2 c couscous
- 4 small or 2-3 med carrots, chopped ½" (~ 1 cup)
- 2 ribs of celery, ½" slices (~ ½ cup)
- 2 small zucchinis, quartered and ½" slices
- 1 c frozen peas
- ½ c slivered almonds
- In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, lemon juice, honey, ¼ c olive oil, salt and pepper until well blended. Set aside.
- In a small sauce pan over high heat, bring the broth and water to a rolling boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the couscous. Cover and let set 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the carrots and celery and stir. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring every minute or so. Add the zucchini and stir. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring every minute or so. Add the frozen peas and stir. Cover and cook for 1-2 minutes or until the peas are heated through. Remove from the heat.
- In a large bowl, add the cooked couscous and vegetables. Whisk the dressing and pour over the contents of the bowl. Stir to mix well.
- Either serve immediately, let set at room temp until the rest of dinner is ready or chill in the refrigerator.