This Couscous Salad with Honeysuckle Vinaigrette is a delicious meal starter.
Couscous Salad with Honeysuckle Vinaigrette
Makes 6 to 8 servings
- 1 cup pearl couscous
- 1½ cups chicken broth
- 2 cups fresh pink lady peas, cooked
- 1 bunch asparagus tips, blanched
- 1 cup shaved fennel
- 1 cup moscato grapes, halved and seeds removed
- 1 cup thinly sliced celery
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- ½ cup sliced almonds, toasted
- ½ cup Honeysuckle Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
- Garnish: fresh chervil, honeysuckle blossoms
- In a medium saucepan, combine couscous and broth. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer until couscous is tender and liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Rinse with cold water, drain, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine prepared couscous, peas, asparagus, fennel, grapes, celery, shallot, and almonds. Add Honeysuckle Vinaigrette, and toss to combine. Garnish with chervil and honeysuckle blossoms, if desired.
Makes approximately 1¼ cups
- ⅓ cup white wine vinegar
- ½ cup honeysuckle blossoms
- 2 tablespoons Honeysuckle Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh shallot
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ⅔ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- In a small container, combine vinegar and honeysuckle blossoms. Let mixture steep for at least 2 hours or overnight. Strain mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl.
- In bowl, whisk together honeysuckle vinegar, Honeysuckle Simple Syrup, shallot, chives, garlic, salt, and pepper. Gradually add olive oil, whisking constantly until mixture is combined. Store, covered, in refrigerator for up to 3 days. Let come to room temperature, and whisk before serving.
Honeysuckle Simple Syrup
Makes 1½ cups
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1½ cups water
- ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved
- 2 cups honeysuckle blossoms
- In a small saucepan, combine sugar, 1½ cups water, and vanilla bean seeds over medium-high heat. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, whisking often, until sugar is dissolved, about 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat, and add honeysuckle. Let steep for 15 minutes. Discard honeysuckle. Transfer to an airtight container, and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.
For more recipes featuring honeysuckle, see “Ambrosial Delights” on page 119 of the May/June 2017 issue of Victoria.