I am a huge lover of salad. They’re my staple dinner dishes, especially in summer. Not all salads are created equal though. Nothing wrong with the basic iceberg lettuce, tomato and cucumber, but that is not my style. I am a flavour fiend. Plain doesn’t do it for me.
I am also someone who has to have different textures in my dishes so I love to mix soft, with crunch, hold with cold, cooked with raw etc.
Salads in our household are not usually a side dish. Unless we’re having a braai or entertaining, they are usually our whole meal. Whether they include meat or not, I like to pack in as many food groups as possible and load up on nutrients, while ensuring it’s filling and tastes delicious. Don’t forget minimal hands on time too. On hot summer evenings the last thing I want to do is spend a lot of time in front of a hot stove.
This particular salad is has some North African / Middle Eastern notes and is totally vegan so suitable for anyone. Spicy roasted carrots and chickpeas drizzled with honey and sprinkled with flaked coconut. Mixed this with couscous (or quinoa if you prefer), and adorn with toasted almonds and pomegranate seeds. For some extra textural crunch, I’ve added mixed seeds, fresh herbs, and chopped baby spinach. Definitely a feast of flavour and colour!
Spicy Roasted Chickpea, Carrot and Couscous Salad
Roasted Carrots & Chickpeas
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Mild/medium curry powder Depending on how much spice you like
- ½ tsp Masala or Mother in Laws Spice Mix Optional
- 4 – 5 Medium Carrots, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper to taste
- 400 grams Tin of chickpeas, drained or equivalent of cooked chickpeas
- ⅓ Cup Coconut Flakes Optional
- 1-2 Tbsp Honey
- 1 Cup Couscous Feel free to use quinoa or other grain of your choice
- 1 Cup Boiling Water
- 1 tsp Vegetable Stock Powder/Granules
- ½ tsp Salt
- 2-3 Cups Baby Spinach roughly chopped
- ¼ Cup Toasted Flaked Almonds
- ⅓ Cup Pomegranate Seeds
- ¼ Cup Seed Mix
- Fresh herbs Optional
Roasted Carrots & Chickpeas
- Preheat the oven to 200°C
- Wash, dry, trim and chop your carrots
- In an oven dish, add the olive oil and spices, then add the carrots, sprinkle with a little salt, and toss in the spice mixtures
- Roast the carrots for approx. 20 minutes until just tender (this will depend on the size of the pieces)
- Add the drained chickpeas and toss with the spices and carrots, then return to the oven for 5 minutes (At this point you need to prepare your couscous and other ingredients)
- Next, add the coconut flakes and drizzle with honey then return to the oven for a further 5 minutes
- Add the couscous, salt and stock powder to a large bowl. Pour over the boiling water and immediately cover with plastic wrap or a tight fitting plate or lid. Leave to stand for 10 minutes
- When the time it up and the couscous has absorbed all the water, mix with a fork to separate the grains, then add the roasted carrots, chickpeas and coconut