Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Greek Couscous Salad with Feta

This is a Greek salad with a twist.  Bites of crispy vegetables, briny Kalamata olives, salty feta cheese, olive oil and lemon juice, brought together with delicate bits of tender couscous.

I love the texture and feel of couscous when it hits my palate.  It is so different than anything I have eaten before.  Couscous has the look of bread crumbs and the taste of tiny bits of pasta.

Couscous has a neutral flavor which makes it very versatile and is a wonderful alternative to pasta, rice or potatoes in cold or hot sides or salads. 

The best part is that it is ready in about 10 minutes.  The box never says “instant”, but it should.  I used whole wheat couscous that I got from Trader Joes and it was deliciously easy.  

You can make your couscous in a pot as stated on the box or make it in the bowl that you plan on making your salad in.  That will be one less pot to wash.  Simply place dried couscous in the bowl, add boiling water and cover with plastic wrap.  Let sit for 5 minutes and fluff.

Because everyone likes it different, I listed a few items below as options for these reasons…
·         The garlic; because the flavors of the ingredients in the salad are already pretty strong without the addition of garlic. 
·         The oregano; may distract from the fresh parsley.
·         The garbanzo beans; which I would have added to give my salad more bite, substance and protein.  But when I went to my pantry I found six types of beans and none of them were garbanzo.  So they never made it into this batch.

1              cup         couscous
½             tsp.        kosher salt
1              cup         boiling hot water
Place the dry couscous, oil and salt in a bowl.  Pour in one cup of boiling hot water and cover with plastic wrap.  Let stand for 5 minutes and fluff with a fork.  Let cool to room temperature before adding the rest of the ingredients.
½                             red pepper, chopped small
1              sprig      green onion, sliced thin or 1 Tbsp.sweet onion, minced
6              oz.          crumbled feta cheese
½             pint        grape tomatoes, sliced in half
½                             cucumber, seeded and diced small
½             cup         pitted kalamata olives, sliced in half
2              Tbsp.     fresh flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
½             can         canned garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed (optional)

2              Tbsp.     fresh lemon juice
4              Tbsp.     olive oil
½             tsp.        kosher salt
¼             tsp.        black pepper
1              clove     garlic, minced (optional)
Pinch                     oregano (optional)

Whisk together the dressing ingredients and pour over salad and toss to mix.


  1. Nice looking salad. This one will get me brownie points with the bride!