Serves: 2-4 | Cooking time: 30 mins | Difficulty: Easy
Hearty, comforting and super easy to make, this 5-ingredient veggie couscous salad ticks all the boxes for simple weeknight dinners but also great when you need a quick dinner party side salad that won't take hours to make and will look great on the table. Spice the eggplant with our Ottoman spice blend to impart a distinct Turkish accent to this dish and plenty of mediterranean flavours. Roasted pine nuts add a bit of crunch and crumbled feta (or goats cheese) nicely balances the spicy notes. Ready in less than 30 minutes. Just tuck in and enjoy!
- Ottoman spice blend
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1 medium sized eggplant, skin on, chopped into 1cm thick round slices
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup Israeli (pearl) couscous
- Small bunch of flat leaf parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped
- Feta for garnishing
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- Small bunch (15g) flat leaf parsley (you can also use mint or coriander if preferred, or a combination of herbs to your liking)
- A handful of pine nuts
- Sea salt & ground back pepper
- In a large saucepan, sauté the eggplant with olive oil and 3 heaped teaspoons of Ottoman spice blend on medium heat until the eggplant is starting to soften and caramelise on the edges. Add the onion and keep cooking for another 2-3 minutes until the onions have softened as well.
- Add the couscous, stir and cook for another 2 minutes on medium heat until the couscous has a golden colour. Add water per couscous pack instructions, stir and cover the sauce pan. Simmer per couscous pack instructions (usually 10-12 mins) or until the water is fully absorbed and the couscous is cooked through.
- Meanwhile, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a small saucepan and roast the pine nuts for 2-3 minutes on medium heat. These burn quite fast so remove from the pan as soon as they start to gain a golden brown colour. Set aside.
- When the couscous is ready, fluff with a fork and add the lemon juice and herbs. Toss everything together, taste and adjust spicing with salt and pepper to taste.
- Scatter the pine nuts over the salad and serve with crumbled feta or goat's cheese on top. Can be eaten warm or at room temperature.