This Versatile, Vibrant Couscous Salad Recipe Is Ideal for Al Fresco Suppers

Recipe Info

10 serves

45 min

Medium

Ingredients

Oven-Baked Couscous

  • 1kg dried couscous
  • 2l boiling water 
  • 50g butter
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 3 tsp table salt

Green Dressing

  • 2 green bell peppers
  • 2 peeled onions
  • Two handfuls of fresh dill
  • One handful of fresh parsley
  • 1kg Greek yogurt
  • Salt and pepper

Toasted Almonds and Pumpkin Seeds

  • 150g almonds
  • 150g pumpkin seeds

Croutons

  • Small loaf of bread(at least one day old)
  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper


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This Versatile, Vibrant Couscous Salad Recipe Is Ideal for Al Fresco Suppers

Surely the best recipes are those that can easily be adapted, giving you the chance to get creative in the kitchen. That’s exactly why we love this couscous salad. Simply prepare the basic elements, then give the salad your own spin by adding the toppings you find tastiest!

Fresh, summery salads are ideal for outdoor suppers on the patio with loved ones. You could serve this couscous salad in small bowls with the aromatic dressing on the side. Alternatively, lay out the various elements buffet-style and invite your guests to create their own salads according to their individual preferences. The latter is a great option if you’re catering for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians; everyone will be happy.

Couscous is lighter than pasta, contains more protein than rice and is an excellent source of immune system-boosting selenium. Cooking couscous in the oven is just as easy as on the hob and leads to softer, fluffier grains.

With this recipe, you can use up bread you’ve had for a day or two, as well as leftovers (we’re always looking for ways to reduce waste!). You can top your salad with anything from cheese to chicken, knowing that couscous’ mild taste will let your chosen flavours take centre stage. Add crunch with croutons plus nutrient-rich nuts and seeds; add creamy softness with the yogurt-based dressing. This salad is truly a fabulous fusion of contrasting textures.


Step by Step

Oven-Baked Couscous

  • Preheat your oven to 100°C.
  • Place the couscous in an ovenproof dish and carefully pour over the boiling water. Add the butter, olive oil and salt. 
  • Stir well then stand for five minutes to allow the couscous to absorb most of the liquid.
  • Transfer the dish to the oven and let the couscous steam for six minutes.
  • Meanwhile, place a large bowl in your sink and surround it with cold water and ice.
  • Remove the dish from the oven and transfer the couscous to the bowl. Stir frequently to fluff up the grains and ensure they all cool at the same rate. 
  • Monitor the temperature of the couscous with a food thermometer. When it drops to 4°C, drain the couscous using a sieve, return it to the bowl and refrigerate.

Green Dressing

  • Wash the bell peppers then roughly chop them and the onions. Blend the pieces in a food processor; leave the mixture there for the time being.
  • Wash the dill and parsley, shake them then pat dry with a tea towel. Pull off the leaves and throw away the stems.
  • Add the leaves to the mixture in the food processor and blend until smooth.
  • Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, add the Greek yogurt then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Stir thoroughly.

Toasted Almonds and Pumpkin Seeds

  • Preheat your oven to 160°C.
  • Spread the almonds and pumpkin seeds out on a baking tray lined with parchment. Toast them in the oven for 10 minutes.
  • Turn the oven down to 100°C and open the door. Leave the tray in the oven for a further 10 minutes.
  • Remove the tray and leave to cool.

Croutons

  • Preheat your oven to 160°C.
  • Cut the bread into 1cm cubes then spread them out on a baking tray. Drizzle olive oil over them and ensure they’re coated evenly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toast in the oven for 10-20 minutes.
  • When the cubes begin to brown, turn the oven down to 100°C and open the door. Toast for a further 10-15 minutes, ensuring they’re golden and crisp.
  • Remove the tray and leave to cool.
Tailor the Salad to Your Tastes

  • Add the almonds and pumpkin seeds to the couscous and stir. To make the salad more refreshing, you could also stir in cucumber and tomato or cold, cooked peas and leek.
  • Here comes the fun part – customising the salad with your choice of toppings! Tasty treats that pack a punch are ideal. Why not try feta cheese, dried apricots, cold, cooked bacon, chicken or tuna – or something else entirely?
  • Sprinkle the croutons over the top and serve with the dressing and some crusty bread. Enjoy!


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©bodum®. all rights reserved.