Garlicky Tomato and Basil Couscous
May 3, 2009, 9:35 pm
Filed under: side dishes and salads

If you’ve read any of my prior posts, you probably get that I love couscous.  In particular, Israeli couscous.  So, with that in mind, I try to incorporate  couscous into many of our meals at home.  It helps that our three year old is also a fan.

You also may have read in prior posts that my husband is a pickier eater, at times, than said three year old.  He tries very hard not to criticize anything that I make, but sometimes it’s apparent that he’s not overjoyed….the other night being one of them.

The other night he announces that he doesn’t really like Israeli couscous.  Ooops.  Oh well.  He could have said something like a year ago….

Today though, he’s out of town, so out comes the Israeli couscous!  That, added with one of my favorite combos of tomato and basil, and I have one totally yummy salad for lunch.

Garlicky Tomato and Basil Couscous

1 1/2 cups Israeli couscous

2 cups water

15-20 grape tomatoes

fresh basil leaves (8 to 10 leaves or so)

1/3 c. pine nuts

3 to 4 cloves of garlic, finely diced or put through garlic press

olive oil (1/3 cup plus 1 or 2 T.)

1/2 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

Cover bottom of medium saucepan with olive oil (1 to 2 T.).  Add 2 cups Israeli couscous and toast on med-low heat, stirring constantly until beginning to brown.  Add 2 cups water and increase heat to bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce heat to low.  Let simmer for approximately 10-15 minutes or until water is absorbed.

Remove couscous from pot and let cool in large bowl.

While couscous is cooling toast pinenuts in skillet over low heat, just until warmed.  Then add to couscous.

Cut grape tomatoes in halves or thirds and add to couscous.  Wash basil leaves and tear into small pieces.  Add to couscous.


For dressing:

Whisk together 1/3 c. olive oil, juice of 1/2 lemon, 3 to 4 garlic cloves put through a press, and salt & pepper to taste. 

Pour over couscous, tomatoes, basil and pinenuts and toss.


I love the crunch of onion in cold salads, so I also added about 1/4 of a red onion, finely diced.  The salad is wonderful without it,  and some may find the onion overwhelming, but I like it with the onion.  Also, right before serving, I added a little bit of freshly shaved parmesan to the bowl.  I also found that to be a nice addition. 



5 Comments so far
Leave a comment

YUM! I have never had couscous, but I think I need to try this one!

Comment by teenietidbits

I tried your recipe today.

It was fantastic 🙂

Comment by Evelyn

Awesome!! Thanks for the feedback Evelyn! I’m glad you liked it~

Comment by whatsupwiththejoneses

Great recipe… perfect, thanks!!

Comment by Gill Jordan

Great! Thanks for the comment, Gill. Glad you liked it!!

Comment by whatsupwiththejoneses

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