It might seem like an odd time of year to start indulging in salads and if you’re anything like me, all you’ll be able to think about is naughty comfort food (Mac Cheese??) BUT stick with me – this ‘salad’ is so hearty and full of goodness that it’s a definite year-round winner and you can customise it pretty much whichever way you want to add more of your favourite ingredients.
From a trusty old Waitrose recipe card, here’s what you’ll need if you stick to the recipe (2 servings but more like 4):
150g Giant Wholegrain Couscous
1 x tbsp olive oil
1 x tbsp Sun Dried Tomato Paste (if you use the Cooks Ingredients one from Waitrose it’s about half the jar)
Squeeze lemon juice
70g wild rocket
100g cherry tomatoes, quartered
6cm piece of cucumber, deseeded and halved, then thinly sliced
80g can John West Tuna Infusions Chilli & Garlic (I used this, but any plain tuna with some crushed garlic and chilli flakes added would work just as well, or even plain tuna if you’re not fond of the flavours
2 spring onions, thinly sliced (I left out the spring onions since we’re not massive fans)
And here’s the easy bit – just mix it all up in a big bowl. Well, not quite but almost.
Bring a pan of water to the boil and cook the couscous until tender, around 6-8 minutes, just like pasta. Mix the olive oil, sundried tomato paste and lemon juice in a small bowl, before drizzling over the couscous. Pop it in the fridge to chill.
Mix the couscous, rocket, tomatoes and cucumber together in a large bowl and serve. Top with the tuna and enjoy – SO easy!
What I loved about this recipe is that not only was it delicious (if Pete was telling me to make it again then it’s definitely got the seal of approval!) it was actually really good value for money. I made it on the basis that I’d be taking it for lunch and I normally buy some small salad pots from Marks & Spencer which are on a 2 for £3 deal, it’s kind of impossible to beat that for value if you’re making something from scratch.
That said, all the ingredients I bought with the exception of the olive oil and the lemon as I already had those, came to roughly £8.50. To me that’s quite pricey for two lunches at £4.25 a serving, but as I mentioned earlier in the post it made absolutely mountains of food and we have very generous appetites. So in the end it was more like £2.12 a serving and as I still have half the couscous and half the tomato paste left I could make it all again for very little cost.
Next time I think I’d opt for plain tuna and maybe add some olives and chilli flakes…so many options! Again, I need to work on my food photography (well just photography in general!) but well, you get the idea.
What about you? Salad in colder weather or stews all the way?