Ready in 45 minutes
This couscous salad is a versatile dish that can be used as a main vegetarian course, served over crisp lettuce or as an accompaniment to grilled lamb, fish and chicken courses.
Making this dish requires a sharp chef's knife and patience; finely diced vegetables are essential for the proper taste and texture. And unless your knife skills are well-honed, dicing veggies finely takes time.
How about a food processor, you ask? While a knife makes clean, crisp cuts, a processor tends to mashes the vegetables, drawing out the water and diluting the flavor.
We use the skin of a zucchini instead of the flesh because it has a sharper taste, holds little water and is crunchy. You can use a carrot peeler, but to get a thicker cut of the skin use a knife. Cut off one end of the zucchini and stand the vegetable on end for stability. Then cut down the length of the zucchini. When you've cut a full strip, turn the zucchini and repeat.
Before you add any ingredients to the couscous you must ensure there are no clumps - my favorite part of the preparation. Once the couscous has absorbed all the water, make sure it's not too hot and use your hands to break up any clumps and fluff the couscous.
The salad tastes best after it has time for the flavors to meld. I like to make it a day ahead.
In a small saucepan, combine the water, turmeric, coriander, cumin and 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil.
Meanwhile, place the couscous in a large bowl. Once the spice mixture has boiled, pour it over the couscous, then mix together with a fork. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let stand 15 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed.
Use your hands break up and fluff the couscous, breaking up any clumps. Zest and juice the lemons and add both to the couscous. Drizzle in the olive oil, then use a fork to mix well.
Add the zucchini skin, bell peppers, onion, currants and parsley, then mix well. Season with salt. Cover and refrigerate several hours to allow the flavors to blend. Let come to room temperature for servings. The salad can be made several days ahead.