This arugula couscous salad is fresh, tasty and hearty. Perfect for a picnic, summer party or just eat it for lunch.Recently I was asked to submit a recipe for a cookbook. I know! I was really psyched. More about that when it’s finished. Anyway, that was the first time I used pearl couscous in a salad and I am now hooked. I love this little chewy, pasta-like grain. I’ve used it in my Middle Eastern chicken & couscous soup (which is fabulous by the way) but never in a salad. So using some of my favorite salad ingredients (arugula, red onions, asiago cheese and peppadew peppers) I’ve come up with the awesome arugula couscous salad.
I think this dish would be perfect to take to a summer party. I don’t know about you but I tend to bring salads to summer get togethers. And sometimes I get sick of making the same old things … pasta salad, macaroni salad, asian slaw salad…. you know what I mean. This summer I can’t wait to bring this one. It think it will be a big hit and it’s so versatile that I could vary it anyway I wanted. I used peppadew peppers in this recipe. I was strolling past the antipasto/olive bar at Giant Eagle and these colorful peppers caught my eye. They have a slight tang from the marinade but they are cute, round, sweet peppers. My friend Lisa loves them. I’ll have to ask her what she does with them. She always has good ideas. Anyway, if you can’t find these peppadews, you could use a roasted pepper instead. Also make sure you use pearl or Israeli couscous. It’s much bigger than regular couscous and it’s what makes this salad in my opinion.And that’s about all there is to this. You make the couscous, let it cool and then toss all your ingredients in a tasty little vinaigrette. I think some slender asparagus would be quite good in this salad or even some parma ham or prosciutto. There are lots of combinations to try and I’m sure I will and blog about it! Well I hope you like this as much as I do and if you invite me to a party this summer, you already know what I’m bringing. Enjoy!
- ¼ cup red onions, thinly sliced
- 2 cups of cooked couscous (pearl couscous)
- 1 cup arugula (tightly packed)
- 1 cup marinated peppadew peppers chopped
- ½ cup Asiago cheese, shredded
- 2 Tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon crushed garlic
- ¼ teaspoon dried mustard
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- Cook your pearl couscous according to instruction and let cool.
- Add your couscous, onions, arugula and peppers to a large bowl and mix.
- In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, mustard and thyme.
- Add the dressing to the bowl and mix to combine.
- Sprinkle cheese on top and serve or refrigerate.