Couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini ~ Ham Pie Sandwiches

07 May 2014

Couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini

couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini

Who wants a quick and delicious lunch salad? You know you want one.

Raw beet has fast become my favorite way to cram as much crunchy, sweet vegetables as possible into a salad. To keep everything in my kitchen from turning fuchsia, I use golden beets. Red or chioggia beets also work well, but their juice will stain. At the very least, red beets will produce a bright pink salad. Be aware!

Of course, beets alone are not a particularly sufficient lunch. To give this salad some real heft, I opened a can of chickpeas. These little guys are the saviors of lunch salads everywhere. And why not bulk it up with the easiest non-grain ever, instant couscous? Perfect.

Not only is this salad tasty, easy, and cheap, it's very easily packable for work lunches or potlucks. The couscous absorbs the dressing, so there's very little risk of an olive oil spill. If I still worked in an office, I absolutely would have packed up a bunch of servings so I could grab one every day as I ran out the door.

I accidentally made enough salad to feed myself for a full week. Oops. On the other hand, now I have lunch just waiting in the fridge constantly. I call that a win.

Makes 6-8 servings.

couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini

Couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini

1 cup instant couscous
salt, pepper, olive oil
1 cup boiling water
1 medium-large golden beet
1 small zucchini
4 mushrooms
fresh parsley & chives
2 cups cooked chickpeas

lemon juice
dijon mustard
salt, pepper
olive oil

Make your couscous by putting it in a heat-safe bowl, seasoning it with a bit of salt, pepper, and olive oil, and pouring the water over it. Cover with a clean tea towel and let it sit while you prep the rest of your ingredients. It will be done in about five minutes.

The vegetables are super easy: just cut them up into the shapes of your choice. I scrubbed and grated a golden beet and finely chopped a zucchini and a handful of mushrooms. You can add all kinds of other vegetables if you like. Chop up a decent whack of flat-leaf parsley and a handful of chives while you're at it.

When your couscous is finished, fluff it with a fork. Add your vegetables, herbs, and chickpeas and stir together.

Make your dressing by combining the juice of half a lemon, a spoonful of dijon mustard, and a generous grinding of salt and pepper. Whip with a fork to emulsify as you drizzle in about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of olive oil. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Pour your dressing over the salad and mix thoroughly.

couscous salad with chickpeas, golden beets, and zucchini

Check out that beautiful golden glow. I actually might have to rename this "golden glow salad," don't you think? So pretty. So tasty.

Which salads are keeping you happy as the weather heats up?


Elizabeth said...

Yum just the thing for a yummy healthy lunch.

foodfeud said...

This sounds and looks fantastic! I never really see golden beets except in November, but I'll keep an eye out. If I don't find any, I'll just have to make some substitutions. In any case, this is exactly the kind of meal I love to eat.

Joanne said...

I had to laugh at your chickpea comment because it's so true - I always reach for the almighty chickpea when I need to bulk up/add protein to a salad! This is such a beauty. I love how nutritious it is!