Thursday, July 1, 2010

Betcha Believe Me Now Chicken and Couscous Salad

So Chad’s dad didn’t know I knew how to cook anything healthy. He only knew of my previous style of cooking… you know, that really, really good but really, really bad for you kind of stuff. I tried to tell him, I’ve found a new way. (No, I didn’t forget the old way, don’t worry.) I tried to tell him that we’ve been eating all this great healthy stuff. But you know what… I don’t think he believed me. He didn’t think I could change my wicked little ways… that is until he happened to discover this Blog! That’s right; the Big Boz himself took time out of his very busy day to read my Random Musings! And you know what? He wanted to try one of those healthy dinners. So Chad's parents joined us for an impromptu dinner. I found this recipe on the Cooking Light web site and let me tell you, it did not disappoint!  As long as you don't mind a little bit of chopping, this salad is so simple and it is off the charts delicious!

Chad and I love couscous, and since I knew we had a box on hand I decide to go with it. But I’m sure you could substitute my new buddy Quinoa & it would taste just as great! I upped the veggies, added a tomato for the tomato fans, avocado for the avocado fans, doubled the dressing and served it over a bed of raw baby spinach.  Oh and I used my new panini maker to grill some whole wheat pita triangles that I served on the side.

Chicken and Couscous Salad
1 1/4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 (5.7-ounce) box uncooked couscous (Try the Near East brand Toasted Pine Nut. It's so good I always keep a box on hand.  It also makes a quick and easy side dish.)
1 1/2 cups cubed cooked chicken (I used a rotisserie chicken, shredded)
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup diced radishes (about 3 large)
1/2 cup chopped seeded peeled cucumber
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted

1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, minced

To prepare salad, bring broth to a boil in a medium saucepan; gradually stir in couscous. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Spoon couscous into a large bowl; cool slightly. Add chicken, onions, radishes, cucumber, parsley, and pine nuts; toss gently to combine.

To prepare dressing, combine vinegar and remaining ingredients, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle dressing over salad; toss to combine.

Note: You can toast nuts quickly in a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Stir frequently, and as soon as they become fragrant, remove the nuts from the pan.
Calories: 334, Fat: 10.9g

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