Pearl couscous is literally a bowl full of tiny pillows of pasta bliss. I discovered it only a year ago and I am trying to catch up on all the lost time with this adorable and scrumptious food.
My favorite part of making this was the ridiculously buttery, caramel sweet aroma that took over the kitchen when I skillet-toasted the pine nuts. Those little nuggets are amazing.
I am loving the quickie dishes lately and this is another low-maintenance goodie! This one is especially nice because it is tasty piping hot as well as lukewarm or even cold straight out of the fridge. I have experienced all three in the past 24 hours and they were all yummy!
garlic pearl couscous + chickpea + tomato salad
1 cup dry pearl [Israeli] couscous [about 2 cups cooked]
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped
1 can organic canned chickpeas [no salt added], rinsed and drained
Half of 1 lemon, juiced
1 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
1 large or 2 small garlic cloves, finely diced
freshly ground black pepper
sea salt [Celtic sea salt if you are feeling extra gourmet, it’s the best!]
1/4 cup raw pine nuts
do it up!:
Cook the couscous in a large pot according to individual directions. [I used a 4.7 oz. box of Near East pearl couscous and cooked it with about 1 tbsp. olive oil.]
In a medium bowl, add the tomatoes, chickpeas, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, garlic, and pepper and stir all together.
Once couscous is complete and all water has been absorbed, add the contents of the medium bowl into the pot of couscous along with the second tablespoon of olive oil and a dash of sea salt, to taste. Stir well over medium to medium-high heat until the mixture is hot.
Add the raw pine nuts to a hot skillet and toast on medium-high to high heat for a few minutes until golden brown. No oil needed here, the heat will bring out the delicious natural oils and the aroma will be buttery and amazing. Constantly stir with spatula, as these babies will burn quickly.
Serve up the couscous salad and top with warm toasted pine nuts.