Cook 1 Batch of Couscous, Make 3 Different Meals
We’re not gonna lie, what sometimes starts out as a couscous meal for two turns into a pasta spread fit for a potluck once it’s cooked. But the serving size snafu doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be eating the same spread all week long. With a little culinary creativity, and global inspiration courtesy of your spice rack and fridge, you can transform this vegetarian dish into three distinct and mouth-watering meals perfect for a picnic or office lunch. How does Indian for tonight’s dinner, Italian for tomorrow’s lunch and Greek the day after sound? We’d say leftovers have never seemed so exciting.
Indian-spiced Couscous Salad
– 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 1 cup Israeli couscous
– 1 1/2 cups water
– 1/2 tsp garam masala
– salt to taste
– 1 large lemon, juiced and zested
– 7 oz extra-firm tofu
– 1/2 tsp Herbes de Provence
– 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper + salt to taste
– 1/2 cup red pepper, diced
– 1/4 cup baby spinach, chopped
– 1/2 inch fresh ginger, chopped
– 1/4 frozen corn kernels, thawed
– 1 small serrano chili, diced (optional)
– grill or grill press
1. In a saucepan, add the couscous and cook with 2 tbsp olive oil on medium-high heat. Stir occasionally until slightly brown and aromatic, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add water, lemon zest and garam masala. Bring it to a boil, cover and simmer for 10 to 12 mins or until the liquid has evaporated. Transfer the cooked couscous to a large bowl and set aside to cool.
2. Cut the tofu into 1/2 inch thick steaks, drizzle 1/2 tbsp olive oil, sprinkle some salt, pepper and Herbes de Provence to taste. Flip the steaks and repeat. In the meantime, heat the grill pan and place the tofu on the hot grill. Grill both sides then set aside to cool completely. Chop into small cubes.
3. Add peppers, spinach, ginger, serrano, corn, tofu and lemon juice.
So your couscous is boiled and tender — great! Now get to grilling that tofu, or any protein for that matter. We like our tofu well-seasoned with salt, pepper and Herbes de Provence, and with dark grill marks on both sides for maximum char.
Chop up that tofu and toss it in with the couscous all the fresh veggies and herbs you like. Soooo colorful — that’s how you know it’s good for ya!
Serve this Indian-inspired plate cold or at room temperature — add a few slices of roasted sweet potatoes to the plate to make sure you’re nice and full after the last grains are scooped! Now save up those leftovers and get ready for two meal transformations that will elevate these leftovers like you wouldn’t believe.
Italian Couscous Panini With Cheese
– left over couscous salad
– 2 slices sourdough bread
– 1/2 onion, sliced
– grated pepper jack cheese
– 3-4 fresh basil leaves
– 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
– salt + freshly ground black pepper to taste
– grill or grill press
1. Sprinkle onions with salt and pepper, then add to grill, flipping to cook both sides.
2. Brush outside of bread slices with olive oil.
3. On one slice of bread, add grated cheese, leftover couscous salad, grilled onions and fresh basil leaves. Then sprinkle with more cheese.
4. Add the other slice of bread on top, then place on a grill press till cheese is melted.
Pasta on bread?! Yep, we went there, and once you do too, you’ll understand why. The couscous only gets more flavorful the longer it sits, making it a great zesty topping to a sourdough grilled cheese. Keep it simple with white cheddar, or add pepper jack and grilled onions like us for extra zing.
Grill up that sando and serve while the cheese is all melty with grilled asparagus or a seasonal fruit salad. Or go there and eat with tomato soup!
Greek-Style Couscous Stuffed Peppers
– leftover couscous
– 1 tomato, diced
– 8 kalamata olives, diced
– 3 tbsp crumbled feta cheese
– 6 fresh mint leaves, chopped
– 6-8 mini sweet peppers, sliced into halves length-wise
– salt + freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Add diced tomatoes, olives, feta cheese and mint leaves to the couscous salad.
2. Spoon the mixture into each mini pepper half.
Fresh-from-the-market mini peppers make the perfect vessels for this day-three meal, especially after it’s amped up with mega-flavor additions like salty feta, creamy olives and fresh mint. These Greek-style poppers are effortless game-day finger food, or a light mid-week dinner that guarantees you’ll have room for dessert.
How to do revamp your leftovers? Tell us how you make them stretch out all week long in the comments below!
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