Much as I enjoy food blogging the downside is in trying to maintain one’s weight especially the increasing waistline in my case. It’s very easy for discipline to disappear especially when one sees the delicious recipes from other bloggers as well.The hot days currently being experienced in Johannesburg means more salads – one needs variety to entice the palate and to help maintain the discipline. A welcome change from the leafy salad variety is a couscous salad.
I have been enjoying couscous for many years but until I had to answer one of Pink’s Friday Food Quiz as to what is couscous – I was blissfully ignorant that it is granules of semolina made from durum wheat and it is also the staple of North African cooking. With instant couscous available in the supermarkets it’s very simple to prepare – just add boiling water and let it sit for about 10 minutes until it fluffs up and it is ready to serve. Couscous is amongst the healthiest grain based products with a more superior vitamin profile than rice and pasta.
The combination of the ingredients in this Moroccan-style couscous and chickpea salad is one of my favorite and the recipe is from the Domestic Goddess – Ideas magazine.
MOROCCAN-STYLE COUSCOUS AND CHICKPEA SALAD
Olive oil, for frying
1 large onion, sliced
5ml cumin seeds
2 medium brinjals, sliced, salted and rinsed
300ml couscous, cooked (I use the Tipak brand and cook according to the packet instructions)
1 x 410g can, chickpeas, drained
100ml soft dried apricots, chopped
50ml fresh coriander, chopped
10ml lemon zest
50ml almonds, chopped
30ml olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
5ml each ground cumin and coriander
30ml lemon juice
30ml balsamic reduction
Heat a little olive oil and sauté the onions.
Add the cumin seeds and fry for a further minute.
Remove from the pan and set aside.
Heat more oil and fry the brinjals in batches until browned on both sides. Season to taste.
Mix together the couscous and the onion and brinjal.
Add the chickpeas, apricots, coriander, lemon zest and almonds.
Mix all the salad dressing ingredients and pour over the couscous.
Leave to stand until ready to serve.