Gay Cook’s Coconut and Orange Couscous Salad    

Gay Cook

by Gay Cook

Makes 4 to 6 servings

This fresh-tasting salad is perfect for this time of year or as a summer salad. Steaming the couscous makes it fluffier. I read an article in the Ottawa Citizen recently about the high amount of chemicals in canned coconut milk. I visited a Chinese supermarket in Ottawa and found a chemical-free product called Aroy-D (400 ml) from Thailand. It was 3- cents more expensive than the chemically based products but quality was excellent. They are available in most stores.

  • 1 cup (250 ml) quick-cooking couscous
  • ½ cup (125 ml) canned coconut milk
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) lemon juice
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) chopped green olives
  • 2 seedless navel oranges for segments (photo explains process)
  • Salt to taste, depends on saltiness of the olives
  • Pinch Cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) chopped fresh cilantro1.  Place the couscous in a sieve and toss briefly under lukewarm tap water (this prevents the couscous going through the sieve) and leave for 3 minutes so it swells.2.  In a saucepan bring 1-inch (2.5 cm) water to a boil and place the sieve above the water. Cover and steam the couscous for about 10 minutes, stirring it several times. Remove the sieve and let the couscous cool briefly then gently rub it through your hands to separate the clumps. Return it to the heat and steam for 5 minutes more. Fluff the couscous again and cool completely.

    3.  Place the couscous in a salad bowl and stir in the coconut milk, lemon juice, olives and orange segments. Season with salt and cayenne pepper to taste and add the cilantro.

    Note: To make orange segments: Cut a thin slice off the top and bottom of the orange, then stand it upright on a cutting board. With a sharp knife, cut off the rind including the white pith, in strips from top to the bottom so no pith remains. Hold the orange in one hand and cut between the membranes to remove the segments.
    Slicing an orange 001

To Readers: if you have any question about this recipe or anything else related to food, please feel free to email me: gay@gaycook.com.