Friday, March 22, 2013
Winter recipe: pearl couscous salad with chickpeas, blood oranges, purple onions, and fresh mint
The Anthropologie where I work is in a mall, so when I need to grab a bite to eat, a latte, or an iced tea, I often bop down a few doors to Nortstrom's cafe, eBar. They have surprisingly food, and my favorite is a pearl couscous salad with chicken and oranges.
I'd actually never seen or heard of pearl couscous before, and I'm not a big fan of regular couscous, which always tastes a little dry to me and not chewy enough. But pearl couscous is a different animal entirely. It's actually a pasta made in the shape of little balls.
Since I loved the eBar salad so much, I decided to make it at home . . . only better. Instead of regular oranges, I used blood oranges (those delightfully tart citrus fruits that you can only find this time of year); instead of cilantro, I used fresh mint; and instead of chicken, I added chickpeas, which still provide protein, but are softer and more flavorful that cubes of chicken (not to mention vegetarian-friendly).
Serves two as a full meal or four as a side.
2 cups dry pearl couscous
3 cups water
1 can chickpeas, drained
2 tablespoons butter
2 blood oranges, cut in have and separated into wedges
Half a purple onion, chopped
A handful of fresh mint leaves
A squirt of lemon juice
salt, to taste
01. Put couscous, water, chickpeas, and butter into a pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil.
02. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost all the water is gone.
03. Stir in remaining ingredients.
04. Refrigerate. Serve cool.