Do you need a couscous recipe that is really versatile, really tasty, AND really easy?
YES! The answer is yes. And I’m glad, because this israeli couscous & artichoke salad is all of those things.
And these are good qualities in food, good qualities in life. (They also apply to nuts.com – the sponsor of this post – read more about them, below!)
I’m currently in the midst of a make-your-own-vinaigrette phase right now. Sometimes – especially for lunch salads – I rely on pre-made dressings. They are so easy, and save a few minutes of prep time. But other times – it’s just a few minutes. And right now I feel like I have a few minutes to make the dressing.
Like everything in life, my desire to cook and spend a lot of time in the kitchen tends to ebb and flow. There are times when life is busy and stressful and cooking seems to add to that overwhelmed feeling. And there are other times when life is busy and stressful and cooking is a release and the kitchen is a place to relax. Cooking a meal at the end of the day is something I actually look forward to.
So right now I’m in the love phase, but you never know, next week I could be in the hate phase and ordering pizza for dinner.
So how do we make this recipe?
Cook the couscous. (Israeli (or pearl) couscous is just larger couscous…and basically little rounds of pasta. Hiiiii! Mom of a toddler over here, pasta is a daily staple!)
While that’s cooking, blend up the dressing and then toss it with the hot couscous after it’s been drained. Give it a few minutes to cool and then toss with the remaining ingredients: marinated artichoke hearts, chopped parsley and toasted pine nuts.
What I love about this dressing is that the parmesan cheese is blended right in – so it’s impossible to have a bite without that salty, cheesy flavor! I also infused a little more flavor into this salad with the marinated artichokes – they are a little more expensive, but I felt like it was worth it here. You can definitely use regular ones, too.
Then you have a yummy dish that you can seriously eat for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Don’t roll your eyes!
Breakfast: top with a fried or poached egg
Lunch: toss with a big pile of arugula or greens
Dinner: serve alongside some grilled chicken and vegetables
Versatile. Tasty. Easy. I told you!
Nuts.com is like the best bulk section you’ve ever laid eyes on. They have every type of nut, dried fruit, snack, alternative flour (like nut flours), spice, bean, grain, pasta…I can’t list anything else, but you get the point. They have everything you can think of and they make bulk-buying really easy and enjoyable. The prices are great, the quality is excellent, and the customer service attentive. I’m a fan!
Thanks to nuts.com for sponsoring this post and thank YOU for supporting the sponsors that keep the recipes coming on this site. If you’d like to give it a try, use this link for four FREE samples with a $25 purchase. (I can recommend a few things if you need help narrowing it down! ;))
- 2 cups israeli (or pearl) couscous
- 12 oz jar of marinated artichokes, quartered or chopped
- 1 cup chopped italian (flat-leaf) parsley (about a ½ bunch)
- ⅓ cup toasted pine nuts
- 4 Tbsp lemon juice (about one lemon)
- 2 Tbsp dijon mustard
- 2 small shallots (about ¼ cup rough chopped)
- ½ cup oil (olive or canola)
- ¼ cup shredded parmesan cheese
- salt & pepper to taste
- Prepare couscous according to directions. (I cooked mine in salted, boiling water for about 5 minutes.)
- While couscous is cooking, prepare dressing:
- In a blender, combine lemon juice, dijon, chopped shallots, oil and parmesan cheese and blend until smooth. (I also added a few Tbsp of water to get everything moving.)
- When couscous is done cooking, drain and toss with dressing while still warm. Set aside to cool.
- Toss together couscous mixture with parsley, artichoke hearts and pine nuts.
- Season with salt & pepper to taste.
- Serve at room temperature.