Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Mediterranean Night

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Lately we have become slightly obsessed with couscous. I'm pretty much ok with that because seriously it is probably the healthiest food item I've ever craved. Usually my food cravings lean more toward those super-crunchy cheetos or chocolate pudding, but couscous? Ok, I can roll with that.

Tonight I decided to try a recipe I found for a Greek Couscous Salad and pair it with a lemon/olive oil marinated baked tilapia. It was a simple and extremely easy dinner to throw together, prep time took maybe 10 minutes, so I was thrilled!

Greek Couscous Salad

- 1 box of plain couscous
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- Pinch of black pepper
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp. lemon juice
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 large tomatoes (diced)
- 1 medium-sized zucchini, halved and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup fresh basil, cut into strips
- 1/2 cup green onions, thinly sliced
- 6-8 oz. crumbled feta cheese (I used a tomato/basil feta and it was fantastic!)


Prepare the couscous by bringing the broth, salt and pepper to a boil, then add the entire box of couscous and remove from heat, covering for 5 minutes. Then transfer the couscous to a large bowl and fluff the grains with a fork. Set aside.

2. Prep your veggies and add the olive oil and lemon juice to the couscous, coating well before you add in all the veggies. I also added another generous sprinkle of salt to the mix. Stir well to make sure everything is combined.

3. Cover the bowl in plastic and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, when you're ready to serve add in the feta cheese and devour it...yep, the four of us ate the entire bowl. It was awesome.

I really didn't have much of a recipe or measurements for this tilapia dish, I just kind of threw it all together based on other recipes I tried. Plus with the black pepper and lemon flavors in the couscous salad, I wanted something to complement it without being too heavy.

Lemony Baked Tilapia

- Tilapia fillets (I used 5)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 1 lemon (sliced thinly)
- black pepper
- salt


1. Whisk together the black pepper, lemon juice and olive oil. Place the fillets in a shallow baking pan (or large zip-top plastic bag) and coat well with the marinade. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours.

2. Once you're ready to cook the fish, lay the fillets out on a piece of heavy duty foil and top with the sliced lemons and sprinkle liberally with salt. Then fold another piece of foil over top of the fish to make a "packet" - I cooked 5 fillets so I divided the fish up between 2 foil packets.

3. Cook the fish for 20 minutes at 350 degrees. It should be tender and flaky, coated in all of it's delicious lemony juicy-ness when it is done.

I think next time I'll add some chopped sundried tomatoes to the couscous salad. You could also add black olives but I think they are one of the most horrifyingly disgusting foods on the planet and taste the way bugs look, so you won't find them in my cupboard or fridge. All in all it was a delicious "light" dinner with a great Mediterranean flair. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

And for my vegan/vegetarian friends out there, try cooking the couscous in vegetable stock and you should be good to go, maybe look for a good crumbly soy cheese if it's out there to add instead of the feta.

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