Pearl couscous salad

This is the perfect salad for hot Summer days when you don’t feel like cooking, since the veggies – bell peppers and onion – can also be added raw instead of sautéed.

I’ve used pearl couscous but you can use the plain one too for another no-cook option since it has to be soaked in hot water, whereas pearl couscous will have to be boiled.

I’ve also roasted some mini cauliflowers in the oven – sorry, no substitution for that other than grilling them on a BBQ or similar. You can of course replace them with normal cauliflower rosettes. They’ve been seasoned with ras el hanout, the tasty Northern African spice mix, for a little exotic touch.
I’ve baked them directly, no precooking, so they stayed quite crunchy. If you prefer a softer texture, you can first steam them, and then finish them off in the oven.

The other great tastemakers in this recipe are the fresh herbs – flat-leaf parsley and mint – plus lots of lemon juice.

So here we go, let me know if you make it and if you liked it. 🙂

Pearl couscous salad with roasted cauliflower

Serves 4

½ yellow bell pepper
½ red bell pepper
1 red onion
300 gr. pearl couscous
5-6 radishes
3-4 spring onions
a small bunch of fresh mint
a small bunch of flat-leaf parsley
e.v. olive oil
4 mini cauliflowers (or ¼ of a big cauliflower, in rosettes)
2 teaspoons of ras el hanout
1 lemon
black pepper

Pre-heat the oven at 170°C.

Prepare the marinade for the cauliflower by mixing the ras el hanout with 6-7 tablespoons of olive oil and half a teaspoon of salt.

Brush the cauliflower with the marinade and bake in the oven until nice and golden yet still a bit crunchy.

In the meantime, cook the pearl couscous in salted boiling water as indicated on the packaging (or soak the plain couscous in hot water). Drain and rinse with cold water, then add a few spoons of olive oil and stir so that the grains don’t stick to each other.

Sautee the chopped red onion in olive oil with the diced bell peppers and a pinch of salt until soft and slightly caramelised, then leave to cool off and add to the couscous.

Slice the radishes and the spring onions and add them to the couscous together with the chopped parsley and mint leaves. Add salt and pepper to taste, the juice of one lemon and more olive oil, if necessary, then stir well.

Serve cold or at room temperature.