Chopped Chicken and Couscous Salad with Sweet Basil Dressing
Aren’t summer salads, bursting with fresh garden produce, just the best?! I am super excited to share this Chopped Chicken and Couscous Salad with Sweet Basil Dressing with you. But first…
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And now let’s get back to that awesome salad!!
This salad recipe comes from Lori Lange of Recipe Girl. I’ve always loved Lori’s enticing and approachable recipes, sprinkled with stories of her family’s life. But it wasn’t until I attended the BlogHer Food conference in Austin, Texas a couple months ago, that I had the pleasure of finally meeting her face to face. Lori has a great laugh, is super smiley, and knows how to rock a pair of cowboy boots. I like that. Alot. :)
It has been a real pleasure to read and cook from Lori’s book, The Recipe Girl Cookbook. Just like the recipes on her popular blog, the ones in the book are welcoming and tasty, using ingredients and techniques that are easily attainable. I especially like how Lori offers ideas to change up each recipe, and at the back of the book she includes ways to incorporate her recipes into themed menus. She completely takes the guess work out of planning a gathering or special meal.
And the photos in the book? They are simply beautiful, as you would only expect from the work of Matt Armendariz, from Matt Bites.
I had several recipes tagged from the cookbook, and it took me awhile to decide what to actually share with you. But then I looked out the window into our kitchen garden and saw the basil plants, all lush and begging to be used. I knew right then and there what I wanted to make. And eat. And share with you!
This salad is a definite keeper, an all-family pleaser. It has chicken (meat!), which automagically bumps up any salad in my husband’s rating system. It has Israeli couscous, those tiny little pasta bubbles that our girls love so much. And it’s loaded with the delicious summer goodness of sweet corn and fresh pungent basil. This recipe particularly peaked my interest with its use of raw sweet corn kernels, incorporated into the salad straight from the cob without cooking. I think I’ve found a new love. Why haven’t I been eating raw sweet corn in my summer salads all along?!
Oh, and one more thing. Just go ahead and double the sweet basil dressing right away, to have some extra on hand. Drizzle it over fresh greens and use it as a veggie dip. It’s awesome!
Chopped Chicken and Couscous Salad with Sweet Basil Dressing
Aren’t summer salads, bursting with fresh garden produce, just the best?!
- for the sweet basil dressing:
- 1/2 c. mayonnaise
- 2 T. finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 T. prepared basil pesto
- 1 T. water
- 2 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tsp. honey
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- for the chopped chicken and couscous salad:
- 4 c. finely chopped romaine lettuce
- 2 c. finely chopped roasted chicken
- 2 c. fresh (raw) corn kernels, from about 2 large cobs
- 2 c. finely chopped red cabbage
- 1 c. dry Israeli couscous, cooked according to package directions, then cooled
- 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded, ribs removed and finely chopped
- 1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 c. dried currants (or substitute golden raisins)
- 1/2 c. finely chopped pecans
- In a small bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients. If the dressing seems too thick, whisk in more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until you reach a consistency you're happy with. It should be creamy and thick, but also pourable.
- In a large bowl, toss together all salad ingredients.
- Add the dressing and toss to coat evenly. Divide salad among 4 bowls to serve. Or, if you prefer, serve the dressing on the side so that individual eaters can add their own salad dressing.
- The dressing is so good, I highly recommend making a double batch of it. Whatever doesn't get used on this salad can be used for other salads or as a veggie dip. Yum!
Adapted just slightly from The Recipe Girl Cookbook by Lori Lange.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 582Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 92mgSodium: 403mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 5gSugar: 13gProtein: 30g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.
Disclosure: I received a copy of The Recipe Girl Cookbook for review purposes. All opinions are my own.
Such a gorgeous salad. Love Lori’s book!
The Panera Strawberry Poppyseed salad is one of my favorites!
Since it`s summer, I love salads with a good amount of fruits! Like, sliced apples or strawberries! Always, good.
My favorite summer salad is just tomato salad with chopped avocados and fresh mozzarella dressed in extra virgin olive oil, salt & pepper. And maybe a drizzle of balsamic reduction :)
Lately I am into fruit salads!!
My favorite summer salad is just a good old-fashioned basic tossed salad with all the veggies I can pile on!
I love putting strawberries, yellow squash, green bell pepper, red onion and cucumber in salad with a poppy seed dressing…soo good!
My fav is a fresh caprese salad — for some reason I never make it at home, but always order if I see it on a menu when I’m out!
Broccoli salad is my favorite salad.
I loved wilted lettuce! It reminds me of my childhood, as it was a staple on our table!
I love summer salads with fresh fruit and nuts, like strawberries and walnuts!
My favorite would have to be a simple caprese salad. Fresh tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil – yum!
My favorite salad is one we call “Sizzling Salad” – grilled chicken, steak or shrimp, still hot on top of romaine lettuce, summer squash (and maybe other vegetables), freshly grated parmesan cheese and a touch of ranch dressing.
Yesterday I made a quinoa, black bean salad with avocado, cherry tomatoes, and cilantro. I ate it with a spoon from the serving bowl for a while until I realized what I was doing. The shame of it was lost on me.
I like a fresh cobb salad!!
pasta salad with lots of extra fresh veggies is my favorite!