Cooking, Dinner, Lunch, Recipes, Salad

Chicken-Couscous Salad with a Zesty Tahini Dressing

April 5, 2013

Couscous-Checken Salad from healthinspirations.net-0502

Today I could tell you all about how happy I am that Spring is finally I here. The birds are happily singing in the early morning hours replacing the need for an alarm clock, the flowers are blooming and the days are finally long enough to make it home from work before dusk.

Well, sadly none of that is the case {except for the latter}. Spring is usually one of my favorite times of the year. The simple satisfaction I get from packing away my puffy winter jacket and from wearing  my ballet flats without freezing my toes off can hardly be outdone. I love every season but Spring and Summer are the most anticipated ones. After long, snowy winters every ray of sunshine that hits my face revives  and powers me with energy like nothing else can. This year however, I’m still wearing my winter jacket and my winter boots  have certainly been a good investment. I’m not quite sure what’s wrong with the weather but somehow it seems unfair that after 6 months of winter the forecast predicts even more snow this weekend.

Couscous-Checken Salad from healthinspirations.net-0501

All I can really do to cope with grey weekends is cook. I’ve been making hearty, warming meals far too long now so recently I’ve started including lighter, healthier options into my dinner routine. More often than not these salads will be built around a  grain or pulses. Last night’s dinner for instance included wheat berries and chickpeas, two simple ingredients that added great texture to my salad.

Couscous-Chicken Salad from healthinspirations.net

The recipe I’m sharing with you today includes couscous and lentils. To add some crunch I toasted some lemon-soaked chickpeas until they were crisp and golden. The best part however, the tahini dressing. A simple concoction of sesame paste, lemon juice and parsley that I slathered onto the grilled chicken.  

I am well aware of the fact that delicious food won’t make Spring come any sooner but we all have to do our part to make time go by a little faster…

 

Chicken-Couscous Salad with Tahini Dressing

inspired by & adpated from Katie’s Couscous with Harissa Chicken, Zucchini and Crunchy Nutty Salad, Yoghurt Drizzle Cream

serves 4

Ingredients:

For the couscous salad:

  • 200g uncooked couscous
  • 85g uncooked lentil
  • 2 chicken breasts {about 300g}
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 handful baby spinach
  • s + p

For the Tahini dressing:

  • 4 tbsp. tahini
  • 4 tbsp. water
  • pinch of salt
  • lemon juice from 1/2 lemon
  • coarsely chopped parsley {about 1-2 tbsp.}

Toppings:

  • 1 handful blanched almonds {roasted in the preheated oven at 175°C for 7 minutes}
  • 1 can chickpeas {drained and soaked in fresh lemon juice with a pinch of salt for 30 minutes. Drain lemon juice and roast in the preheated oven at 175°C for 45 minutes}.

Instructions:

Dressing:

  1. Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl until slightly thickened. Set aside.

For the salad:

  1. Cook the couscous and lentils in two separate pots according to instructions on the pack. Once cooked, let cool.
  2. In the meantime heat up the coconut oil in the pan and cook the chicken. Depending on the thickness of the chicken breast this may take 10 minutes.Cook on medium heat to ensure it doesn’t burn. Let it cool slightly, then cut into smaller pieces and set aside.
  3. Wash and roughly grate the zucchini. Transfer into a bowl. Add 1 handful of baby spinach.
  4. To assemble the salad add the cooled couscous and lentils to the bowl with the grated zucchini and spinach. Add the lemon juice, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Place the chicken pieces on top of the salad. Sprinkle with the toppings.
  5. Serve with the tahini dressing and fresh parsley.

Couscous-Checken Salad from healthinspirations.net-0519

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4 Comments

  • Reply Kathryn April 5, 2013 at 11:39 am

    I know the feeling…we got back to London yesterday and it was snowing. Snowing! In April! Not fair. This looks like a really tasty meal to eat through my grumpiness at the weather 😉

  • Reply Bec April 5, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    What gorgeous photos! This looks insanely delicious. It’s Autumn here now; the days are shorter and the morning’s colder and I’m not looking forward to winter. Because I was in America a few weeks ago, it feels like I just went through winter haha. This recipe has definitely been bookmarked! I better make it soon though.

  • Reply Emily @ Hungry Delights April 9, 2013 at 3:24 am

    The recipe looks beautiful. We are heading into Winter now and I am just starting to feel the cold in the evenings. Our temperature doesn’t get remotely as cold as you would experience but I love rugging up and enjoying the benefits of winter 🙂

  • Reply Sara April 9, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    That looks amazing! I love pasta salad and the couscous gives it a whole new texture!

  • Leave a Reply to Bec Cancel Reply