|Napa Valley, CA|
|Executive Chef, Charles Sutton|
|Estes Park, CO|
2 medium red bell peppers
2 medium yellow bell peppers
1-1/2 cups instant couscous
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp ground cumin
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large English (hothouse) cucumber, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 cup Moroccan or other small, black, oil-cured olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
2 green onions, white parts and about 3 inches of green parts, minced
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 pound ripe beefsteak tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
Roast Them Peppers:
Preheat the broiler. Put the peppers on a sheet pan lined with foil and broil for about 15 minutes, turning once or twice to ensure they blister and blacken evenly. Remove to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let cool.
Peel, seed, and cut into 1/2-inch dice. Set aside
To peel fresh tomatoes, core them and put them in a pot with 2 quarts of boiling water for about 30 seconds. Remove; cool under running water, and peel. Halve, lengthwise, and gently squeeze to remove the seeds.
Fluff the couscous with a fork. Add the cucumber, olives, green onions, garlic, tomatoes, and roasted peppers. Pour the dressing of your choice (not a creamy dressing) over the couscous and toss to combine. Let stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour.
Just before serving, stir in the parsley.
The only thing you have to be concerned about in this dish is overcooking the couscous by pouring on too much boiling water. Otherwise, this salad is very forgiving. It allows you to adjust seasonings and substitute other ingredients almost at will. A few suggestions are chopped grilled vegetables, sautéed mushrooms, and grilled or poached chicken are just a few of the ingredients that can be added to this salad.