Pomegranate Cauliflower Couscous Salad
I’m so excited to share this gorgeous Pomegranate Cauliflower Couscous Salad with you this week. I know I get excited about lots of recipes, but I truly think this is my favourite salad recipe yet! It’s the perfect blend of juicy pomegranate seeds, crunchy almonds, chewy golden raisins, creamy avocado and flavoursome fresh herbs. All blended with a lovely light cauliflower base which soaks up the flavours brilliantly. I love that it’s white, red and green too – the perfect festive dish for Christmas!
This salad is so easy to make, literally 15 minutes of chopping, blitzing and mixing, and you’ll end up with the most amazing flavours and textures. It’s everything you’d want from a salad – light, refreshing, flavoursome, satisfying, sweet, salty, a little sour and bursting with fresh flavour. It’s the perfect dish to go alongside a spread of Christmas dishes, but is also amazing on a bed of rocket and baby kale for a super light and healthy lunch. Very convenient after those little-bit-indulgent Christmas food coma hangovers.
I’ve been wanting to share a Moroccan inspired couscous salad with you for a while now, and am so happy that this beauty is it. I was originally going to call this simply, “Moroccan Cauliflower Couscous”, but the end result was so light and summery that the Moroccan title felt all too dark and spice-filled for this lovely recipe. The avocado, pomegranate, fresh herbs and fluffy cauliflower base really do bring this classic couscous dish right into summer.
We’ve got another two Christmas do’s this weekend – Tony’s dad’s big Croatian Christmas lunch on Saturday, and a classic kiwi Christmas BBQ with my dad on Sunday night. I’m going to be making this salad for sure, along with my Pesto Potato Salad and Raw Beetroot Salad. They all have such refreshing yet bold flavours, I can’t wait.
Traditional couscous salads are made with durum wheat which is cooked by steaming. It’s classically served with a stew spooned over the top, and is a lovely hearty meal for winter. Couscous is a staple food throughout Morocco and much of North Africa, and is always accompanied with lots of dried fruit, nuts and spices.
My summery version of this salad though is made with blitzed raw cauliflower. If you haven’t tried blending up a cauli in your food processor before, you definitely need to try it out with this recipe. Cauliflower has such a subtle flavour that it acts as an amazing base for whatever herbs, spices, fruits and nuts you add to it.
Cauliflower = Cardioprotection and Cancer Prevention
Cauliflowers are one of my favourite ingredients and are so versatile. They have a real ‘meaty’ density to them, so are perfect lightly steamed and added to curries. They’re also fantastic for making a lighter less energy dense version of potato mash, which is great underneath meatballs. My Italian Meatballs (plant-based of course) with Creamy Cauliflower Mash is a must-try, especially in winter when you’re craving something hearty. This salad uses cauliflower in its raw state, although you’d never know it from the end result!
Caulis are an amazing member of the cruciferous family, which are known for their antioxidant content, cardioprotective benefits, and ability to help prevent and reverse cancer. They’re also readily available and generally quite affordable, which means they’re a great one to include regularly in your diet. Key trick with cauli is to keep it raw or lightly cooked, no over boiling until it becomes soggy and sloppy. Think al dente and you’ll be in cauliflower heaven. Even when adding to curries and soups I like to add it near the end so as to keep its lovely tender texture.
I hope you give this gorgeous summery salad a go. It truly is one of the best I’ve made, so I know you’ll love it too. It’s also the perfect chance to show your non-plant-loving friends and family that yes, vegan food is not just green iceberg and sliced tomato! I’m betting if you bring this to your Christmas lunch this year, the bowl will be licked well clean.
If you give this salad a go I’d love to hear what you think. Leave a comment below or take a snap of your beautiful creation on Instagram and tag me @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics – I’d love to see what you come up with!
Have a gorgeous weekend filled with love, friends and family. Last one til Christmas – let’s make it a great one!
Please note – if you are wanting to meet any of the specific dietary requirements below, please read my recipe notes.
Pomegranate Cauliflower Couscous Salad
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 avocado cubed
- 1/2 c raisins
- 1 pomegranate
- 2/3 c almonds
- 1 large handful of fresh mint leaves
- 1 large handful of parsley
- 1/2 a red onion
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon juice and zest
- 1 large clove garlic crushed
- 1 tsp sea salt
- black pepper to taste
- If you'd like to toast your almonds, pop them in a pan on low heat and stir regularly for 5 minutes until they become golden and crunchy. Set aside to cool then pulse in the food processor a few times until they're just roughly chopped. You can also use dried activated almonds here for optimal nutrient absorption and digestion (this is my favourite option!). Set your almonds aside.
- Blend the cauliflower in a food processor until the texture resembles that of couscous.
- Chop the herbs, and add to a bowl with the rest of the ingredients including the dressing.
- Slice the pomegranate in half, hold the chopped half with the palm of your hand facing the bowl, and bang the other side with a spoon to release the seeds into your salad - pick out any pith that falls in.
- Now gently mix all the ingredients together, adding the avocado at the end so as not to squash it too much.
- Top with a little reserved pomegranate seeds, almonds, raisins, avocado and herbs. If you want to make this the day before, simply leave the avocado out and add that on the day of serving. Hope you love it!
- Make it nut free: replace the almonds with pumpkin seeds.
- Make it keto: exclude the raisins and add an extra avocado instead.
- Use dried activated nuts and seeds if you have them (so crunchy!). Otherwise raw or toasted works too.