Arugula and Israeli Couscous Salad

I wish I had a very nostalgic story about this salad to impress upon you just how delicious the combo of arugula and israeli couscous salad with the sweet and lemony dressing is, especially during these hot summer months. But the truth is I simply winged it on a night I didn’t have much left in the pantry or the fridge. Sometimes that’s how the best meals come together though, don’t you think?

 

Israeli couscous and arugula salad

 

 

When you are just tossing things together and hoping something good will come out. When I made it, I instantly loved it and Mau and I polished off a pretty large bowl between us. I made it again a few nights later, just to make sure it wasn’t a starved, anything tastes good kind of discovery. And friends, I have to report I am truly addicted to all the flavor this pearl couscous salad brings.

Arugula | Possibly the best leafy green?!

Let’s talk about arugula leaves. Fresh arugula is  tart, maybe even a little bitter, and has a mild peppery flavor. It’s the most complex green in my opinion and I usually don’t leave Trader Joe’s without picking up a bag of their organic arugula.

I also usually buy couscous from Trader Joe. They have two varieties, a whole wheat couscous that’s a very small grain but also works with this salad, and the Israeli couscous or pearl couscous like the one I used this time.

 

Either works well with this salad, but the most important part of this dish is how you put it together.

But, unlike the typical salad, the dressing is only poured on the cooked couscous, not the entire salad. This way the flavors pair together, but don’t overpower each other. The sweet lemony dressing, fluffy couscous and sharp arugula and crisp cucumber. Total mouth explosion of perfectly balanced flavors.

The tangy and peppery arugula with the mild Israeli couscous is a simple, fast and tasty combo. I add cucumbers and sometimes feta. The game changer though is definitely the dressing.

The real trick to this salad is how you assemble it.

It’s simple: toss most of the dressing with the warm couscous and let it cool slightly before adding any other ingredients. We take the same approach we toss warm potatoes with the dressing first). By doing this, the warm ingredient has a chance to absorb all the flavor in the dressing. A game changer.

organic arugula salad with israeli couscous

Arugula and Israeli Couscous Salad Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup  Israeli couscous

4 cups  baby arugula

2 Persian cucumber or 1 English, chopped

Optional: 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

Dressing Ingredients

1/2 large lemon or 2 tbsp of lemon juice

3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon of agave or honey

1/2 teaspoon of dried basil

1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano

salt & pepper to taste

arugula salad and couscous

Directions

Cook the couscous according to the instructions on the box. Leave couscous in a pot until ready to dress.

Whisk together all of the dressing ingredients. Contents should have a thick consistency

Pour the dressing into the couscous pot and gently stir. Let the mixture sit while you assemble the other ingredients.

Add fresh arugula, cucumbers and feta to a bowl, top with the couscous mixture, toss gently and serve!

Serve with my favorite quickly grilled chicken.

Arugula and Israeli Couscous Salad

Unlike the typical salad, the dressing is only poured on the cooked couscous, not the entire salad. This way the flavors pair together, but don't overpower each other. The sweet lemony dressing, fluffy couscous and sharp arugula and crisp cucumber. Total mouth explosion of perfectly balanced flavors.
Prep Time 10 d
Cook Time 10 d
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup Israeli couscous
  • 4 cups

    baby arugula

  • 2

    Persian cucumber or 1 English, chopped

  • 1/2 cup

    crumbled feta cheese

    optional

Dressing Ingredients

  • 1/2

    large lemon or 2 tbsp of lemon juice

  • 3 tbsp

    extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 tbsp

    Agave or honey

  • 1/2 tbsp

    dried basil

  • 1/2 tbsp

    dried oregano

  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • 1.Cook the couscous according to the instructions on the box. Leave couscous in a pot
    until ready to dress.
    2. Whisk together all of the dressing ingredients. Contents should have a thick
    consistency.
    3. Pour the dressing into the couscous pot and gently stir. Let the mixture sit while
    you assemble the other ingredients.

    4.Add fresh arugula, cucumbers and feta to a bowl, top with the couscous mixture,
    toss gently and serve.

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