The multi-coloured glossy peppers make this salad look jewel-like so it is beautiful on a buffet. It is also a great thing to have in the fridge over a couple of days as it goes with just about anything and as well as being tasty, it is good for you too. Peppers and other roast vegetables are full of anti-oxidants and although couscous it isn’t a whole grain, it contains protein, some B vitamins and fibre. (You can buy whole grain varieties of couscous now, but I have to confess I prefer the taste and texture of the traditional sort. But please do use them if you prefer.) The couscous that you normally buy here in the West is an ‘instant’ variety, and does not require the long steaming that traditional couscous does, making it quick and easy to cook.
Once again, I use my favourite go to ingredient, Roast Vegetables, in this dish, but I cut the pieces smaller and roast them for less time.
1 onion (red if possible), cut in small chunks
1 zucchini, top and tail removed, cut in half lengthways and then cut in half moons
(If you cannot get a zucchini, use a sweet green pepper instead.)
1 red pepper, de-seeded and cut in small chunks
1 yellow pepper, de-seeded and cut in small chunks
2 tablespoons olive oil plus a bit more for dressing the salad
2 to 3 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar plus a bit more for dressing the salad
2 cups couscous
4 cups vegetable stock
salt and pepper to taste
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flatleaf parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
Preheat the oven to 375℉ or about 190℃.
Place the vegetables in a roasting dish and toss in the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 to 3 teaspoons of Balsamic vinegar. Roast for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften and turn golden on the edges. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.
Meanwhile, heat the vegetable stock in a saucepan until nearly boiling. Place the couscous in a large, heatproof bowl and pour the stock over top. Cover with aluminum foil and set aside for about five minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Stir through with a fork and set aside to cool.
Mix the roast vegetables and the couscous together, adding a bit more oil and vinegar just to dress the salad and bring everything together. (You won’t need more than about a teaspoon or so of oil and a few sprinkles of vinegar.) Grind in some black pepper and taste the salad. Add salt if necessary. Stir in the parsley and store in the fridge until ready to serve.