Tuesday, August 24, 2010

couscous salad with chickpeas

This is a great little spin on the same-ol' same-ol' Mediterranean salad - the mint, cinnamon and smoked paprika definitely punch it up a bit.  Smoked paprika is probably my favorite newly discovered ingredient.  Most often, I add it to spice blends for grilled chicken and pork.  It's also a good substitution for chili powder on the Dembowski classic sandwich: muenster cheese in pita bread, heated up in the microwave.

Couscous Salad with Chickpeas

(Adapted from Cooking Light, July 2010)

  • 1  cup  uncooked whole-wheat couscous
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt, divided
  • 1/2  teaspoon  black pepper, divided
  • 1/8  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
  • 1  cup  boiling water
  • 3  tablespoons  extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3  tablespoons  fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons  minced garlic
  • 1/8  teaspoon  smoked paprika
  • Dash of sugar (or squirt of agave nectar or honey)
  • 1/3  cup  roughly chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4  cup  thinly sliced green onions
  • 1  (15-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
  • 1  pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3/4  cup  (3 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
  1. Place couscous, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and cinnamon in a bowl. Stir in boiling water; cover and let stand 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
  2. Combine oil, juice, garlic, smoked paprika and sugar/agave nectar/honey.
  3. Add oil mixture, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, mint, and next 3 ingredients (through tomato). Sprinkle with cheese.
     Yield: 4 servings (1 1/3 cups)

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