I am fighting deadlines right now. As much as I love having company, I still have lots to do to get ready for everyone. We have our dear high school friends coming for a visit this weekend; three guys and their wives who were David’s classmates. I have been baking, shopping and cleaning; the usual preparation for visitors. Yesterday was a particularly long day. I was trying to clean out the refrigerator to make room for my latest purchases and found a large plastic box of baby arugula that I bought last week and promptly forgot about. Raiding the pantry and fridge, I came up with this delightful salad.
This salad was so easy to pull together and was a refreshing dish to have on a warm evening. I served it with simple sauteed chicken cutlets. It was one of those nights when I just needed to be alone in the kitchen to make some order out of the chaos that I had created from my cooking and shopping frenzy.
Having such a lovely dish helped to calm my jangled nerves. Cooking really is therapy for me. We are looking forward to seeing everyone again. We were all together last in Nantucket which I blogged about here. Moses and Maryanne took such good care of us that we are hoping to do the same for them in Lake Lure.
ISRAELI COUSCOUS AND ARUGULA SALAD (Adapted from Guy Fieri)
1 1/2 cups Israeli (pearl) couscous
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
Freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 red or green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 red onion, diced
2 cups baby arugula
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add couscous and cook 8 to 10 minutes, until couscous has puffed up and is cooked through to the center. Drain and allow to cool. Transfer to a large bowl.
Prepare dressing by whisking together the lemon juice and mustard while drizzling in the olive oil. Once slightly emulsified, stir in pepper flakes and season with salt and cracked black pepper.
Toss the tomatoes, cranberries, red bell pepper, onion and arugula with the couscous. Pour the dressing over top. Season with salt and pepper to taste and toss to the combine.
I am setting this recipe aside for later. Sounds wonderful. Enjoy your special friends.
Thanks Susan. I am looking forward to hearing more about your move.
This sounds like the perfect salad. I love the kind were you raid your fridge and pantry. I have a big plastic box of baby spinach in my fridge. I think I am making this tonight!
Hope it works for you Penny. We really loved it.
I’m not a fan of arugula, but the salad looks very nice and I really like your last shot.
I know Larry. Arugula can be kind of bitter, but the sweet cranberries kind of temper that.
This sounds like a great salad to make when you’re overwhelmed with plans and upcoming company. We just had house guests and I worked like a dog to get ready. She’s one of the best cooks we know and I didn’t want to disappoint them for dinner and dessert.
We’ve looking forward to seeing you soon. Hope you can relax a little.
Looking forward to seeing you Sam. Sounds like you know what I am talking about. Having you guys over for a few drinks, apps and a boat ride will be a pleasure.
Hi Penny, cooking is therapeutic for me too, gorgeous salad! How fun!
Penny your salad looks delish. I am sure your guests will be well taken care of. I have pinned so many of your meals for my future company.
What a great recipe you came up with to use that arugula, Penny! I love pearl couscous used in salads and this one has such wonderful ingredients. Good to eat healthy when your nerves are jangled too 🙂
Love israeli couscous and your salad sounds great. I know that your guests had a wonderful time visiting you and that they would definitely enjoy whatever you put on the table for them to eat, you are a great cook and a wonderful hostess. 😀