The weather is getting warmer, and in spite of my tendencies to cook elaborate hot meals steeped in butter and cream, I think it’s time to lighten things up a bit. Hot, rich food just doesn’t sit well in the summer. Warmer weather calls for lighter fare, grilled meats and fresh vegetables. It makes sense, really, considering that this is the time when most people remember that long forgotten place called “the gym”.
Quinoa, Couscous, and Tabouleh are some of my favorite grain-like dishes. Whether they are officially classified as “grains” is beyond me, but suffice it to say they are grain-like in texture. I like them because they’re lite, easy to prepare, and they’re the perfect vehicle for vegetables and flavorings. They can be simply dressed, in a little olive oil and lemon juice, and combined with fresh herbs like parsley or mint. In lieu of starchy sides like potatoes or pasta, try preparing these dishes instead. A little garlic, lemon zest, and salt and pepper go along way. Got red onions? Even better.
So next time you’re grilling a lean piece of meat, or flaky cut of fish, plate it over a bed of fragrant couscous…. or quinoa…or tabouleh. Your taste buds ( and your waistline), will be glad you did.