Susie Homemaker’s zucchini-couscous salad recipe

This is more of a cooking method than a recipe. I love to cook, and I’ve noticed that zucchini (also called marrow, summer squash, or courgette) gets kind of soggy when cooked. This works fine in ratatouille or similar dishes, but not in a salad. Then I figured out a way to make sog work for me with the aid of modern technology.

The secret is instant couscous. The photo shows tricolor instant couscous. Any brand and variety will do.

Begin several hours before you plan to serve the salad. Use ¼ cup/45g of couscous per zucchini. Put the couscous in a microwave-proof bowl, and, if you want, add herbs and spices to taste. Then chop the zuke into bite-sized pieces, put them in the bowl, and stir so the pieces are coated by the couscous. You can also add any other vegetables you might want lightly cooked in the salad, such as onions, garlic, or bell pepper. Do not add tomatoes at this point. Tomatoes get way too soggy when they cook.

Now cover the bowl and microwave until the zuke is almost tender. The exact time will depend on your microwave and the size of the batch. I do about five minutes for a two-zuke batch, stirring halfway through. It’s easy to overcook the zucchini, so keep an eye on it.

Take the bowl out, keep it covered, let it cool, then refrigerate. The zuke will continue to cook a bit as it cools. The couscous might seem dry, but don’t worry. The zucchini will eventually release a lot of liquid. Those things are mostly water anyway.

Before you serve it, add dressing, such as oil and vinegar, salt to taste, and any other herbs, spices, or vegetables you want in the salad, even cheese or cooked meat. Here’s where tomatoes can safely go in. (The photo includes black olives and onions.) Toss gently because the zucchini is a little fragile.

Enjoy.

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