Wednesday 17 January 2007
It was cold last night and while a couscous salad may not sound like the most obvious choice for a winter's evening there is something comforting about some gentle chopping and stirring in a warm kitchen before eating a dish that tastes of summer. I always make enough of this for the two of us to have for dinner and then lunch the next day.
Around 300ml just boiled water
Extra virgin olive oil (plus a little garlic olive oil if you fancy)
Juice of one lemon
1 cucumber, peeled and diced
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 red or yellow pepper
A few preserved artichokes
A handful of black olives, halved
1 block of halloumi cut into small chunks
Take a large bowl and add the couscous, cover with the water and then cover the bowl and leave for 10-15 minutes. While this is soaking get on with preparing all of the other salad ingredients. Once the allotted soaking time is up, fork through the couscous to separate the grains and stir through about 2 tbsp of olive oil and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Stir in 1tsp of dried mint. Taste to see if you would like to add any extra oil, lemon or mint, bearing in mind that once the rest of the ingredients are added you may need a touch more of any or all of these. Stir through the rest of the salad ingredients and taste again to check for seasoning. This salad will keep happily in the fridge for a day or two. For a slightly warmer alternative slice the halloumi and cook it for a couple of minutes on each side in a dry frying pan so that it is golden, then serve the salad with the fried halloumi.