Today’s post is the result of a homemade salad dressing which I wanted to finish. Was trying to think of ways in which it could be used to create a warm dish and this couscous salad is the result.
The salad dressing recipe is my sister’s, the kidney beans give this dish a Mexican touch and the vegetable base and seasoning are Mediterranean.
a bit of a kooky recipe with multiple influences
You can adapt this warm salad to whatever you have lying around in terms of vegetables, protein (beans or poultry) and dressing; it is totally flexible.
Ingredients for my Sister’s Signature Salad Dressing
1 Tablespoon good quality extra virgin olive oil
Juice of one lime or lemon
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Put all the ingredients in a screw top glass jar.
- Shake well till amalgamated.
- Will stay good in a refrigerator or in a cool environment for up to a week.
Ingredients for Couscous Salad
1/2 cup boiled kidney beans
1/2 cup cooked couscous*
2 Onions, finely chopped
3 Tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon sunflower and/or pumpkin seeds, toasted
One tablespoon anchovies in olive oil*
One tablespoon Laura Santini Taste #5 Umami Paste (optional)*
One tablespoon crumbly, piquant cheese (I used Manchego)
Salt to taste
- First, we need to “marinade” the salad base. Add salad dressing to the boiled kidney beans and finely chopped onions. Cover tightly and keep for 4 to 5 hours. Do this in advance so that the flavours develop.
- When you are ready to prepare the salad, wash and chop the courgette and yellow pepper in medium sized chunks.
- Heat oil, add the courgette and pepper chunks along with a bit of salt, cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- Throw in the chopped parsley and seasoning of choice. Mix well, cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more. By the end of this cooking time, the vegetables should be cooked but still have a bite to them. You don’t want them too soft or mushy.
- Leave them covered while you prepare the couscous according to instructions on the packet.
- Now add the vegetables, couscous, toasted seeds and crumbly cheese to the onion and kidney bean mixture.
- Mix well and serve.
- Cook the couscous according to packet instructions. You can add a stock cube to the boiling water for a bit of flavour if you like. I didn’t because I had boiled the kidney beans in chicken stock.
- You can use plain olive oil or flavoured oil to cook the vegetables.
- The choice of seasoning is entirely yours. I used umami paste since I thought it would go well with the other Mediterranean flavours.
a few drops of hot sauce over the salad takes it to another level
- Salads: The Best Choice for Good Health (aimwellness.wordpress.com)