Saturday, June 6, 2020 -
Print Edition

Super grain salads (II)

Cooking in the IJN test kitchen continues! We tried the second of the super grains summer salads, this one with an Asian twist, featuring grilled vegetables in a soy/sesame marinade. Turn this into a complete dinner with the addition of toasted peanuts and/or cubes of deep-fried tofu.

Grilled Sesame Ginger Vegetable Couscous


  • 2 large carrots, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 C button mushroom tops, cleaned
  • ½ bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 3 TB sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • cups couscous
  • cups water

For dressing:

  • 1 TB ginger, minced
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 TB sesame oil
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 TB rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced (white and light green parts)
  • ¼ C coarsely chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Toss the carrots, mushrooms and asparagus with sesame oil, soy sauce and black pepper. Let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Heat the grill or grill pan to medium high heat. Grill the veggies until tender and slightly charred, basting throughout with extra marinade. Set aside to cool.
  3. Bring the water to a boil and add couscous. Remove from heat, stir, cover and let sit for 10 minutes or until the couscous absorbs the liquid. Drain any extra liquid and fluff with a fork. Cool.
  4. When the vegetables are cool, slice the asparagus and carrots into diagonal bite-sized pieces and slice the mushrooms. Combine with couscous.
  5. Whisk together ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, olive oil, rice vinegar, honey, cayenne pepper and scallions. Dress the couscous and garnish with cilantro. Serve at room temperature.

Recipe Notes

Our tip: If you want to pack some protein into this salad, garnish with a ¼ cup of toasted peanuts and/or cubes of deep-fried tofu.

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