• April 25, 2014

    Cucumber, Mango & Avocado Israeli Couscous Salad with Mint-Chile Vinaigrette

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    I dropped a running stand mixer on the dog. It was whipping cream. I was reaching for the controls. He tripped me.

    Next thing I knew, the machine was sailing off the counter in slow motion, slamming sideways into my unfortunate canine, blanketing him in softly whipped peaks and very nearly knocking him out.

    A flurry of splattering cream, screaming, yelps, limbs in all directions (both of ours), flying fur and wildly scratching claws desperate to gain traction against the slippery hardwood ensued as he peeled away to safety.

    Related: 9+ Genius Israeli Couscous Recipes You Seriously Have To Try

    He’s okay, don’t worry.

    I think the worst part for the poor little guy – cream-drenched and trembling in a corner – was the bewilderment of it all: should I be happy or sad?

    Ouch! But, yum! But, ouch…

    As he gingerly licked himself clean of sweet, sweet whipped cream, I could see him warily eyeing the offending appliance, trying to work out whether this was a good thing or a bad thing that happened to him.

    Frankly, I don’t think his feeble Irish Setter mind could take the perplexity of such a delicious and painful situation even before getting walloped in the brains by a KitchenAid.

    I’m going to keep an eye on him…

    Meanwhile, I bring you an incredible salad of chewy Israeli couscous, creamy avocado, sweet mango, spicy chile, fresh cucumber and mint.

    Related: How To Cook Couscous Perfectly, Every Time

    I got hooked on spicy vinaigrettes paired with sweet, ripe fruit last summer – with melon and arugula dressed in olive oil, lime juice and jalapeño. I wanted to bring back that flavour profile, but in a more substantial bowlful. I grabbed Israeli cousous (they’re pearl-sized little pasta balls – all couscous is actually teeny semolina pasta!), but feel free to reach for any small pasta or chewy grain.

    Also, as the season progresses, sub in any sweet fruit you like – strawberries, peaches, cantaloupe – you really can’t go wrong.


    • 1 1/2 cups Israeli couscous, dry
    • 1 ripe avocado
    • 1 english cucumber
    • 1 ripe mango

    For dressing:

    • 3 tbsp olive oil
    • 2 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1/4 cup finely chopped mint leaves
    • 1/4 cup minced green onion
    • 1 serrano chile, minced
    • 2 tsp honey
    • 1 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste


    1. Cook israeli couscous in a pot of boiling water (as you would pasta) until al dente, 10-12 minutes. Transfer to a colander, rinsing with cold water until cool; drain 10 minutes.
    2. Peel and chop avocado, cucumber and mango into pieces of roughly equal size. Whisk together all ingredients for dressing.
    3. Combine couscous, chopped avocado, cucumber, and mango in a large bowl. Add dressing and toss to distribute evenly. Taste and add more salt as needed.

    Related: Simple Couscous Salad with Homemade Lemon-Herbed Dressing

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    Hi, I'm Jennifer Pallian, BSc, RD. I studied cooking, baking and food chemistry in a university lab, have years of experience as a professional test kitchen recipe developer and providing technical baking support to bakeries and home bakers. Want to know why your bread didn't rise? I've got your back.I now work full-time as a blogger, putting the years of science and baking to work right here. On Foodess, I share the best recipes in my arsenal - tested-till-PERFECT recipes for cozy baking, easy recipes for weeknight meals and delicious globally-inspired comfort food, plus lots of science-based cooking and baking tips. Welcome!

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    FacebookPinterestTwitter 0 0 vote Article Rating Israeli couscous – aka pearl couscous, is the larger, chewier version of what we call ‘regular’ couscous. A lesser-known ingredient in North American kitchens, this tiny pasta shape is made from semolina flour, then toasted, creating a deliciously nutty flavour. Perfect served cold and tossed with fresh herbs and […]

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