Give me ANYTHING caprese-style and I will devour it! This is a take on The Market Couscous that can be found HERE on my blog – I punched up the garlic, limited the number of ingredients, switched out the feta for fresh mozzarella, and added grape tomatoes and plenty of herbs. The result is a delicious combination of summer flavors that make a great side dish or just a salad on its own.
While not a huge fan of African couscous, I LOVE Israeli (or “pearl”) couscous which is a pasta. These little pops of pasta hold up great in so many dishes whereas another pasta shape or type may not necessarily. In this recipe, the Israeli couscous is cooked ahead and cooled, using a couple of tablespoons of the garlicky vinaigrette to prevent it from sticking together before the dish is completed.
I used grape tomatoes, but feel free to substitute fresh, chopped tomatoes if you have them. I don’t here in Florida so grape tomatoes were a better choice…..and I like the way they look in the salad and balance the shapes of the other ingredients.
It’s summer! Enjoy and enjoy good food.
Israeli Couscous Caprese Salad
- 2 cups Israeli-style couscous
- 2 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 2 large cloves garlic, pressed
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cups chopped cucumber
- 1 cup grape tomatoes
- 1 cup small bocconcini balls (I used the really small ones but you can use any type of fresh mozzarella and chop it)
- 2 tablespoons chives
- 3 tablespoons chopped basil (roll leaves like a cigar and thinly slice to make a chiffonade)
- 1 tablespoon parsley
- kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper
- Bring the chicken broth to a boil in a medium saucepan and add the couscous. Stir, cover, and reduce heat and cook according to the package instructions (usually 8-10 minutes).
- While the couscous is cooking, combine the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, pressed garlic, and oil in a small bowl. Whisk together and set aside. Season liberally with kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper.
- When the couscous is done, spoon into a large bowl and drizzle a couple of tablespoons or so of the vinaigrette over it to keep it from sticking as it cools. Season with salt and pepper and stir.
- Add the remaining ingredients to the cooled couscous and pour over the vinaigrette. Taste again for seasoning.