This recipe came about due to an excess of prepared couscous in the refrigerator. I had prepared a salad (which included couscous of course) last weekend for our monthly supperclub that I run with my friend Marciel. I don't usually use couscous but it has a lovely texture and it takes so little time to prepare. If you like mediterranean flavours then you should give this one a try.
Try these tips to help make this salad easy to prepare.
1 1/2 cups cooked couscous (see instructions for cooking)
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 cup loosely packed Italian parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cucumber, quartered and cut in to 1 cm chunks
1/2 red onion, cut in half and shaved extremely thin
1/4 sun-dried tomatoes cut in to slices (I used dried tomatoes rather than ones packed in oil)
150 g cubed tofu (pressed and marinated in lemon juice and dried herbs)
10 Kalamata olives pitted and sliced
1 lemon, zested and juiced, about 3 tablespoons
1/3 cup cashews (soaked for 1-2 hours)
1/3 cup water
1 tablespoon sweetener (agave syrup works but also sugar works too)
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoon toasted pine nuts
Salt and pepper to taste
Put the couscous in a large bowl and pour the boiling water over it. Cover with a lid or a plate and set aside for 5 minutes. Then remove the lid and fluff with a fork.
Toss the finely chopped herbs with the couscous, as well as the sliced cucumber, onion, sun-dried tomatoes and lemon zest.
Blend together the lemon juice, cashews, agave nectar, chili powder, and cumin, then toss this dressing with the couscous.
Stir in the pine nuts. Taste and season generously with salt and pepper.
Serve immediately, or refrigerate for a couple of hours so the flavours meld together.
Store leftovers in a covered container for up to 5 days.
I had, what I call, my awakening thanks to Brighde Reed. I never felt good about eating meat, but I continued to do so because "it's part of the natural food chain", or "we need protein"... things so ingrained in many of our heads since childhood. A few inquisitive questions to Brighde, quite simply, changed everything. She helped me see that we humans can actually live a healthier life on a plant based diet. I had no more excuses. What made changing my ways so easy, though, was how Brighde opened my eyes to the fact that a Vegan diet isn't so much about the things you can't eat, but more about the things you can! I've never had so much fun in the kitchen, making and creating things I thought I'd have to give up, impressing people with delicious food that's, *gasp*... vegan!