This warm, colourful salad pretty much cooks itself. Add different vegetables to suit your tastes – and season. Add some crumbled feta for a creamy touch, and pine nuts for crunch. You can also add seared chicken strips or bacon for the meat lovers in the family.
- ¼ pumpkin, peeled and diced
- 2 zucchinis, sliced
- 1 golden kumara, diced into bite-sized pieces
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into bit-sized pieces
- 2 eggplants
- ¼ cup olive oil, plus an extra 2-3 tbsp
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup couscous
- 2 tbsp pine nuts
- Juice and zest of an orange
- 1 tsp mustard
- Feta cheese to serve – optional
1 Preheat the oven to 180oC. In a large bowl, combine the chopped vegetables with the ¼ cup oil, garlic and sea salt. Cut the eggplants in half and scoop out some of the flesh. Dice the flesh and add to the chopped vegetables.
2 Line a large tray with baking paper and arrange the oiled vegetables in a single layer. Place the scooped-out eggplants on another tray and brush with remaining oil. Bake both for 25-30 minutes until golden.
3 Meanwhile, place couscous in a bowl and pour over 1 cup of boiling water. Cover with a plate or tin foil to seal in heat and leave for 10 minutes. Then fluff up with a fork.
4 When ready to serve, toss the roasted chopped vegetables with the couscous, toasted pine nuts and dress with the orange juice and zest, mustard and a drizzle of olive oil. Pile into the eggplant halves and crumble over feta. Serve with a few green leaves for colour.
About Jo Wilcox
"I have had a love of food my whole life. Lucky for me my mum allowed me to play in the kitchen from the very beginning – from sitting up on the bench watch her peeling peaches for preserving or planning dinner parties from her many Womans Weekly Cookbooks. Starting in my local beach café, I went onto professional cookery training and my big foodie OE working as a professional chef and nanny. At 21 I launched my first restaurant. The following years saw me owning a gourmet cake and dessert shop and then a pasta deli before I discovered the world of food styling. Today I work in food styling making food look beautiful and tasty in packaging and advertising shoots, as well as my most important role yet – Food Editor of New Zealand Woman’s Weekly. I aim to provide great meal solutions that are interesting and approachable, and of course gorgeous foodie photos that make you want to cook them! I love the feedback and the knowledge that people actually cook them and have great results. If I can give someone a love of cooking and enjoying family meal times and gatherings then my job is done!" See www.jowilcox.co.nzmore of this author