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Feta-Scallion Couscous Cakes with Tomato-Olive Salad
The Washington Post Wine Club Feta-Scallion Couscous Cakes with Tomato-Olive Salad

Feta-Scallion Couscous Cakes with Tomato-Olive Salad

Adding warm components amplifies winter salads. In this light main course, with little effort, quick-cooking couscous is turned into crunchy disks that top a simple preparation of greens. If you don't have whole-wheat couscous, take an extra 5 minutes and toast regular couscous in a small (dry) saucepan over medium heat until it is lightly browned and fragrant before you add the water. The step adds flavor. The recipe doubles easily. Serve along with a seasonal soup.
Wine Pairing
Wine Pairing
For the cakes
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup uncooked whole-wheat couscous (may substitute quick-cooking couscous; see headnote)
3 scallions
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
3 tablespoons egg substitute (may substitute 1 large egg)
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons olive oil

For the salad
2 Campari or small, vine-ripened tomatoes (about 5 ounces total)
6 pitted kalamata olives
Leaves from 6 stems flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 cups herb salad or baby mixed greens
For the cakes: Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Stir in the couscous; cover and remove from the heat. Let sit for 5 minutes, then uncover and fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, finely chop the white and light-green parts of the scallions. Stir into the couscous, along with the cheese, egg substitute and pepper (to taste), until well incorporated. The mixture should be moist and a bit loose.

Grease a large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking oil spray; place the skillet over medium-high heat. Add the 2 teaspoons of oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet.

Divide the couscous mixture into 4 equal portions; they won't hold together well, but they will firm up as they cook. Transfer to the skillet and use a spatula to flatten them to a thickness of 1/2 inch. Coat the tops of the cakes with nonstick cooking oil spray. Cook for 2 minutes or until lightly browned on the bottoms, then carefully turn over the cakes and cook for 2 minutes to brown lightly on the second sides. Turn off the heat.

For the salad: Coarsely chop the tomatoes, leaving as much of the seeds behind as possible. Finely chop the olives and parsley; combining them is okay. Transfer those three ingredients to a medium bowl; add the vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon of the oil and the pepper (to taste), stirring to incorporate.

Rinse and spin-dry the greens, then place in a bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of oil and toss to coat evenly. Divide the greens between individual plates. Top each portion with 2 warm couscous cakes, then spoon the tomato-parsley mixture evenly over the cakes. Serve right away.

Adapted from Cooking Light's "Big Book of Salads," edited by Shaun Chavis (Oxmoor House, 2012).
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick for The Washington Post.

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