Pistachio Citrus Couscous

Pistachios are a powerful little nut with lots of memories tucked under that shell. From Christmas-time snacking and pistachio-crusted chicken to green-flecked ice cream on the streets of Trinidad, the pistachio has woven itself into my life.

It's a great snack for late at night - keeping both your mind and your fingers nimble, and the perfect sidekick to almost anything. Like oranges.

I came across a simple couscous salad earlier this summer over at wholefoodsmarket.com, and it's been a staple ever since. My sisters and mom have already made it a handful of times too.

The best thing about this recipe is it's super adaptable to your tastes or whatever you have on hand. My sister has made it with apples and walnuts instead of the pistachios and oranges - something I'm looking forward to trying this fall. Actually, the original recipe calls for nectarines, but since those aren't typically in season and I don't have the patients to wait for them to ripen when they are, I opted for oranges as my standby fruit. You can see the original recipe here - I've changed a few other things like the type of greens and couscous, since I don't typically have watercress on hand and I find parmesan couscous offers a lot more flavor than plain. But for the most part it's the same Whole Foods creation.

When I made this earlier this week, we ate it alongside some brats (without the buns). Ever since I started eating brats sans buns I've been enjoying them much more. You just eat it like a sausage and dip it in mustard! Since this dish is great warm or cold, I like to bring leftovers in my lunch. I'll usually throw in a fresh handful of greens to up the salad-couscous ratio.

Let me know if you come up with any other fun adaptations!

Pistachio Citrus Couscous


1 box of parmesan couscous
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 orange, peeled and diced
handful of greens (watercress, spinach, spring mix, etc) - stems removed and leaves sliced
1/2 cup pistachios, chopped
1/4 cup thinly sliced shallot


Cook couscous according to box directions (takes approx 5 minutes), then fluff with fork and pour into large bowl. Meanwhile, chop pistachios, slice shallots, dice orange, and add them to the couscous along with the greens. Whisk together vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper, and olive oil (I usually put it all in a small container with a lid and shake it), then toss it with the salad.

Great warm or cold!

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