A couple of weeks ago, I visited with my brother and his girlfriend. Before I went over I cooked a pot of Zuppa Toscano and brought it with me. Ashley made this wonderful fried couscous salad to go with the soup. I was so impressed with the salad that I begged her for the recipe. There isn't really a recipe, she told me, just add what you like. So, here is my version of Ashley's recipe.
2 cups of couscous, prepared according to the package directions
1/4 cup of safflower oil, grape seed oil, or vegetable oil.
1 TBS ghee or clarified butter or plain butter
1 tsp chili powder, more if you like
1 tsp dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2-4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tbs of each Italian parsley and cilantro
salt/pepper to taste
2 cups of kale, cut into thin slices
2 cups of cabbage, cut into thin slices
1/4 cup fired roasted peppers, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup of Swiss cheese, shredded or you can use ricotta cheese
Prepare the couscous according to the package directions. In a large non stick pan over medium heat add the oil and ghee. Once the oil is hot add the parsley, cilantro, onions, and garlic. Saute until the onions are translucent. Then add the cabbage, kale, tomatoes, and peppers. Saute for about 4-5 minutes. Next, add the spices and the couscous. The key to this dish is to toast the couscous. This process make take 15-25 minutes. Once it is toasted to your taste toss in the parmesan cheese and Swiss cheese.
Cooks Note: You can add chicken broth instead of water for the couscous. If you would like the salad to have a bit of tang add some lemon juice.