Friday, July 10, 2009

Tangy Mediterranean salad

Instead of plain orzo or couscous, I used the Harvest Grains Blend from Trader Joe’s. It contains a blend of Israeli couscous, orzo pasta, baby garbanzo beans and red quinoa. It makes a beautiful dish as well as adding more nutrients, but you can easily make this dish with just one of the above. There’s plenty of other tasty stuff in the mix of this recipe!

If you want to make this into a vegetarian main dish salad and add other veggies, etc, think about doubling my recipe. As is, it makes a nice side dish for four people. You can also make it well ahead of time if necessary, and serve it either cold or at room temp. I prefer room temp, by the way! Serve it on greens, or by itself. We had it last night with a small tuna steak and some snow peas.

Mediterranean Salad

Olive oil
Clove of garlic, minced
1 c Harvest Grains Blend (or plain couscous)
2 c water or stock
Lemon, zest grated and juiced
Salt and pepper
1/2 c basil leaves, chopped
1/4 c mint leaves, chopped
1/4 c dried cranberries
1/4 c slivered almonds

Heat the oil and cook the garlic in a saucepan. Add the grains or couscous and heat in the oil, stirring for a few minutes until the grains start to turn golden. Add the water and the lemon juice and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 - 12 minutes until the liquid is absorbed. Add more liquid if needed, or drain some off if necessary: it depends upon the type of grains you are using or the brand of pasta!

Place the grains into a serving bowl, and add a couple tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon zest, and salt and pepper. Allow to cool to room temperature before adding the rest. Add the basil leaves through almonds, and toss.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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