Israeli cousous is just FUN... I like those little round balls of pasta. Tastes good and looks great with fresh grilled vegetables. Use any veggies you like, I decided I wanted to use up a bunch of Swiss Chard and decided to grill it, which turned out beautifully for the salad. The stems were a great color and had some crunch, but maybe they looked a bit like rhubarb!!!
I served this with steaks for Dad's Day but I noticed that it was the gals eating the most of it! We all liked it, but I was happy I made this particular salad as I had forgotten that my niece was Vegan, so this was perfect for her. Yesterday, I ate some leftover salad with some cold cut up steak in it, and is was fantastic. This salad would be a good keeper for a picnic or somewhere else where you couldn't keep something chilled. Nothing to go bad, or wilt, in the heat of the day with this salad. You could make this salad with regular couscous or quinoa also!
2 cups israeli couscous
2 1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp oil
1 pepper, roasted, peeled and diced
1-2 small zucchini, cut into slices 1/2" thick and grilled, then diced
1 onion, cut into 3/4" slices and grilled, then diced
1/2 bunch Swiss Chard, lightly grilled and chopped
1/4 cup green onions, sliced
1 tsp lemon zest
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
2-3 Tbsp red wine vinegar, or lemon juice
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
1-2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper
Boil 2 1/2 cups of water and oil, add the Israeli couscous and boil for 2-3 minutes. Turn off heat and cover pan, letting sit for about 10 minutes. Rinse immediately to stop the cooking and make sure that they don't stick together. Drain.
Cut your vegetables and give a light coat of olive oil. Grill over medium hot coals or gas grill.
- Zucchini cooks quite quickly probably 2 minutes per side.
- Bell peppers can take a while and you will need to char the outside, then peel and chop.
- Onions tend to fall apart unless you cut very thickly and just grill to give some grill marks and to soften the onion.
- With Swiss Chard (or kale) I sprayed them with olive oil cooking spray and then quickly grilled them to soften.
Let your veggies cool and then chop into bite size pieces. In a large mixing bowl, mix your dressing of olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic and salt and pepper. Add veggies and cooled couscous and toss.
Taste and adjust seasoning, you may need more oil and vinegar if it seems too dry. I made this salad up the day before and then tossed again with a little more dressing as the pasta and veggies tend to absorb the dressing.
Here are some other meatless salads that are good for summer picnics or vegetarian options:Couscous Black Bean Salad
Kale, Cherry & Almond Salad
Quinoa, Cauliflower and Feta Salad
Southwestern Edamame Salad
Whole Wheat Asian Noodle Salad