We’ve been on a grain-based salad kick for a while, combining couscous, bulgar, farro or whatever we have in the cupboard with vegetables, nuts, legumes, herbs and spices for new combos. I think this started because:
- Green salads can get pretty grim during the winter months.
- Whenever we serve simple salads to guests, no one eats it and we end up with a neverending bowl of wilting lettuce in our fridge.
I like these heartier salads because they have endless variations, and they are a blank canvas for all the spices we have been collecting. I made this one for our last EatWith event and loved the contrast of the different textures and flavors (I think the cinnamon is a must).
- 1 large box couscous (about 500 g or 17 oz.)
- 2 cans chickpeas
- 2 cucumbers, roughly chopped
- 2 red peppers, roughly chopped
- 2 cups cashews
- 2 cups raisins
- Spices (for example: cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, crushed red pepper, salt, pepper)
- Olive oil
- Juice of one lemon
- Fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- Cook couscous according to package directions in a large pot (a 2:1 water-to-couscous ratio is a good rule of thumb). Let cool.
- Mix in chickpeas, cucumbers, peppers, cashews, lemon juice and a healthy glug of olive oil.
- Add spices, a teaspoon at a time, until it reaches the flavor you desire. Mix in fresh cilantro.
- Transfer to a large bowl and serve at room temperature or slightly chilled.