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Tunisian Couscous Salad

slideshow Delicious, Quick Side Dishes

  • Servings: 8- 10

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  • 3 medium red bell peppers
  • 10 ounces instant couscous (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ripe beefsteak tomatoes—peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 -inch dice
  • 1 large seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1/2 cup Moroccan or other small, oil-cured black olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 2 scallions, white and tender green, minced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Roast the bell peppers over a gas flame or under a broiler, turning, until charred all over. Transfer the peppers to a paper bag and let steam for 10 minutes. Remove the skin, cores, seeds, and ribs and cut the peppers into 1/2-inch dice.
  2. In a saucepan, bring 2 1/4 cups of water to a boil. Stir in the couscous and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cover and let stand until tender, about 5 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, and cayenne and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Fluff the couscous with a fork. Add the roasted peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, olives, scallions and garlic. Pour the dressing over the couscous and toss to combine. Let stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours. Just before serving, stir in the parsley.
Contributed By Published July 1996

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