Israeli Couscous Salad w/ Asparagus and Feta

asparagus_couscous_photo

My initial plan was to make this salad using farro, but I couldn’t get my hands on any so I turned to the cupboard for a convenient alternative.

I wanted to use a heartier grain or rice and thought Israeli couscous would do the job.  Couscous is really just another form of pasta (it’s like really little pasta balls).  The only difference between Israeli couscous and regular couscous is the size. Israeli couscous is bigger and the size makes for a great texture (just be sure to cook your couscous like you would your pasta… al dente!).

This recipe is from one of my bootcamp students (have I ever told you guys that I teach bootcamp?). I was so excited to see that one of the ingredients was asparagus since it is the Food Focus this month! She made the salad with the farro and loved it, so if you can manage to get your hands on some farro definetly try it!

Another thing I really liked about this recipe is the vinegar. Sherry vinegar brings a whole new layer of flavor to this salad and I really don’t think it would as delicious without it.

Israeli Couscous Salad w/ Asparagus and Feta

Yield: Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups cooked Israeli couscous, cooked (barley or farro would work too)
  • 2 bunches of asparagus, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2 –inch pieces
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup of dill, chopped
  • 3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup of Sherry wine vinegar
  • ½ cup of reduced fat feta cheese, crumbled

Directions:

Cook couscous according to package.
Meanwhile, steam asparagus for about four minutes or until just tender.  Combine couscous, asparagus, tomatoes, onion, and garlic.

In a small bowl whisk together oil and vinegar and season with salt and pepper.  Pour dressing over salad and combine.  Finish by stirring in feta and dill…Enjoy!

Calories: 196; Total Fat: 8.4g; Saturated Fat: 1.9g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 15mg; Carbohydrate: 26.9g; Dietary Fiber: 4.5g; Sugars: 7.2g; Protein: 7.7g