Israeli Couscous with Fresh Corn, Tomatoes, and Feta

Now on our summer menu, something that the kids love and easy to get from the garden....
israeli couscous salad
Israeli Couscous
 This is a  colorful summery dish, which is a cross between a warm salad and a pilaf. Folding the corn and tomato into the couscous while it’s still warm brings out the vegetables’ flavor, softening them slightly and making them even juicier than they started out. It also makes the feta cheese very creamy.
If you do have leftovers, it will make a marvelous light lunch the next day, though you might want to pop the couscous into the microwave for just a few seconds to make everything nice and supple, especially if you’ve stored it in the fridge.


1large garlic clove
¾tsp. plus 1 pinch kosher salt, or to taste
2tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
cups Israeli couscous, preferably whole-wheat
1cup fresh corn kernels (from 1 large ear)
1large ripe tomato, diced
3oz. crumbled feta cheese (optional)
2Tbsp. chopped fresh basil


  1. Using a mortar and pestle or the flat side of a knife, mash the garlic and a pinch of salt to a paste. In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic paste, lemon juice, remaining ¾ tsp. salt, and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil.
  2. Cook the couscous according to package instructions; add the corn for last 5 minutes of cooking. Drain well.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the hot couscous-corn mixture, tomato, and vinaigrette. Let the couscous cool for about 10 minutes before gently folding in the feta and basil.


Just about anything goes with this terrific little dish, and you can vary the vegetables, herbs, and cheese to match your mood and what’s in season. Here are a few ideas:
Chopped spinach will wilt appealingly if you fold some into the hot couscous, sautéed mushrooms make it autumnal, and roasted red peppers are an excellent substitute for the tomato.
Parmesan cheese will give the dish added depth of flavor, and ricotta salata is just tasty anywhere you use it.
Fresh rosemary is very appealing used here in place of the basil for several reasons. It’s less likely to turn black when you toss it with the warm couscous and therefore makes a better presentation. And I love its piney flavor and scent with fresh summer tomatoes and briny feta.
The textural aspect of the juice-bursting nibs of corn really is nice. I would say it might even be worth using good frozen corn if you can’t get good sweet fresh corn. But that depends entirely upon how you feel about frozen corn.
Source: http://www.culinate.com/books/collections/all_books/cook_this_now/israeli_couscous_with_fresh_corn_tomatoes_and_feta

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