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Lemony couscous with shrimp, avocado, tomato and mint

Lemon and mint come together in this summery couscous dish that can be a main course, or a side.

For some reason, I seldom make couscous in cold weather, except when I cook a long-simmering tagine, for which couscous is the best possible base. I can't explain why, but I think of couscous more as a summer mix-in. It's quick to prepare (the instant variety, that is) and light, yet provides body to vegetable dishes and salads.

In this recipe for couscous with shrimp, avocado, tomato and mint, the couscous fills in the little spaces in between, and it absorbs a bit of the lemon dressing that pulls everything together. It's a perfect picnic main course that you can make several hours ahead, and you can prepare some with shrimp and some without, for your vegan friends. 

With shrimp, or without for your vegan friends, this couscous can go on a picnic as a main or side.

Lemony couscous with shrimp, avocado, tomato and mint {can be vegan}

From the pantry, you'll need: couscous, frozen shrimp, flat-leaf parsley, mint, lemon, extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt, fresh black pepper, sweetener.

Serves 4-6.

Ingredients

1/2 cup couscous, cooked according to package directions
1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined, defrosted if frozen (I like large 31-40 size)
3 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Large pinch each: kosher salt and fresh black pepper
1/2 tsp sweetener of your choice (agave, honey, or artificial sweetener)
1 avocado, diced
1 tomato, diced
2 Tbsp roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp roughly torn mint leaves (I use spearmint)

Directions

Place the cooked couscous in a large mixing bowl, and set aside to cool.

In a microwave-safe glass bowl, cook the shrimp in the microwave for 2 minutes. Stir, and cook for an additional 2 minutes, or until all of the shrimp are pink and curled. Drain, and add the shrimp to the couscous.

In a small measuring cup or bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper, and sweetener of your choice, until the dressing emulsifies (thickens). Taste, and adjust seasoning if needed.

Toss the diced avocado into the dressing, to prevent it from turning brown. Pour the avocado and all of the dressing into the mixing bowl. Add tomato, parsley and mint, and toss gently.

Serve at room temperature, or refrigerate for up to a few hours until ready to serve.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]


More couscous dishes:
Mediterranean couscous, tomato, cucumber and feta salad, from The Perfect Pantry
Couscous with orange and dried fruit, from The Perfect Pantry
White bean couscous salad with lemon and dill, from Lovely Little Kitchen
Couscous with nectarines and toasted almonds, from Cookin' Canuck

A perfect picnic dish, couscous with shrimp, avocado, tomato and mint (or make it vegan, and leave the shrimp out).


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Comments

This looks perfect for the hot weather predicted for next week! I'll use quinoa if I can't find GF couscous.

Mary, quinoa is a great alternative.

Sounds like a delicious combination!

Kalyn, so good for summer, with the mint!

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