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Couscous and Beet Salad

A cold, vegan salad perfect for a hot summer day. This salad is easy to make and delicious to boot.
Serves 8 to 10. 
  • 6 medium sized beets (about ¾ lb)
  • medium yellow onion
  • 1/2 to 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 Rapunzel’s bouillon cubes the kind with sea salt and herbs or 6 cups of vegetable broth.
  • 4 cups Israeli couscous
  • 1  cup raisins
  • 2/3 cup(s) apple cider or white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup or so almonds, for garnish
  • 2-3 sprigs of fresh basil chopped into tiny pieces (2-3 tablespoons once chopped).
  • Salt and pepper to taste



Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350 to 400 degrees F. Wash and chop beets and onions into quarters or roughly 1 inch squares. Toss beets and onions with some olive oil (1/4th of a cup or so). Cover them with aluminum foil and roast until a fork inserts easily into them, about 1 hour. Once done, let the mixture cool or put the beets into cold water so you can remove the skins once they're cooled. Once the beets and onions are cooled, remove skins from the beets and chop the onions into smaller pieces. 
  2. While the onions and beets are roasting, start the couscous. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Take out ½ to 1 cup water and add the bouillon cubes stirring until they're dissolved. Add the broth back into the rest of the water water. Add the couscous and raisins and cook for 1 to 2 minutes and then take the pot off of the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes. Before it cools all of the way, toss with 1 cup of olive oil so the couscous is well coated and doesn't clump.
  3. Toast the almonds in the oven at 350 until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool.
  4. Once the beet and onion mixture and couscous is cool add them together. Add to this mixture the vinegar, the rest of the olive oil, basil and salt and pepper to taste. Put it in the refrigerator so it is nice and cold when you serve it.
  5. Right before you serve the salad add the toasted almonds and mix well.

Notes: Steps 1-3 can be done in any order. Salad tastes better the next day. Almonds stop being crispy once they are in the salad for too long so add them right before the salad is served. I've heard it's delicious when you add the liquid from the roasted beet and onion mixture to the salad because it adds a lot of flavor. 

Variations:

  • Bonus points for adding hot almonds to the salad. This way you have hot, nutty chunks in the cold salad. Delicious!
  • For some more oomph, add 8 ounces of crumbled goat cheese at step 4 or 5.
  • Substitute dried cranberries or orange slices for raisins.
  • Substitute walnuts for almonds.
  • Substitute lemon juice for some of the vinegar. 

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