Learn how to make TAP’s Coucous Salad

Q: I loved the Bulgur Salad at TAP this past spring — so hearty and filling without being heavy. I’m sure I could fit this salad with bulger, kale and feta into a regular dinner routine! — C.G. DeBold, Atlanta

A: TAP’s chef Tyler Williams sent his updated version of this salad. “I’m looking to impart my personality and spin in each dish included on our menu. I chose to use couscous instead of bulgur as it adds more texture and I can impart more flavor into the grain beforehand.” He notes this is a great side salad but works just as well as an entree. And when serving this as an entree, he often tops it with a six-minute boiled egg.

Israeli couscous is also called “pearl” couscous and is generally available near the rice in your grocery store.

Williams prefers to use an enameled Dutch oven to cook the couscous. The Greek salad dressing is TAP’s house dressing, a lemon-garlic vinaigrette with dried oregano and Greek olive oil. You can substitute your own vinaigrette.

TAP’s Israeli Couscous Salad

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 small white onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice

2 cups Israeli couscous

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1 sprig fresh thyme

1 bay leaf

2 cups chicken stock

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 lemon

1 bunch curly parsley, stems removed, leaves chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped

12 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1/4 cup cooked chickpeas

1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano

3 cups baby arugula or other mixed greens

1/4 cup Greek salad dressing

Salt and freshly cracked black pepper

In a medium saucepan or Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat and add onion, cooking until softened. Using a wooden spoon, add couscous and stir until grains are coated with oil. Stir for 2 minutes until couscous grains begin to toast. Add garlic, thyme and bay leaf and stir for one more minute. Add chicken stock and salt. Keep stirring to keep couscous from sticking to bottom of pot until all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and spread couscous out on a rimmed cookie sheet to cool. Once cool, remove thyme, bay leaf and garlic cloves. Move couscous to a large bowl.

Use a microplane to remove the zest from lemon and add to couscous. Cut lemon in half and juice it over the couscous. Add chopped parsley, minced garlic and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Stir to incorporate evenly.

In a small bowl, cover red onion with water. Let sit 5 minutes, then drain. Pat dry and add to couscous. Add cucumber, cherry tomatoes, chickpeas, almonds, feta and oregano. Toss to incorporate evenly. Gently stir in arugula and add salad dressing. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately family-style or on individual plates. Makes: 7 cups

Per 1/2-cup serving: 183 calories (percent of calories from fat, 36), 5 grams protein, 24 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams fiber, 7 grams fat (1 gram saturated), 2 milligrams cholesterol, 338 milligrams sodium.


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