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2016 was a year full of amazing homemade lunches.  We look back and feel like damn, we nailed it.  Heck, we mastered omusubi!  What can we say for 2017?  We're ready to kick lunch-time's ass all over again.

Step one: explore grains from around the world.  If you're like us, you geek out when you spot a new ingredient at the grocery store.  And while Israeli couscous isn't new for us, we haven't played with it in the kitchen a bunch.  

Fun history fact?  Giant couscous, called Ptitm in Israel, is a type of toasted pasta invented in the 1950s as a wheat based substitute to rice.  It can be served hot or cold and holds its shape firmly without clumping.

When lunch rolls around, we are typically craving something salty and zesty.  Think bold, lively flavors.  Crafting a greek salad recipe with Israeli couscous was a perfect first run.  Plus, we reliably stock these ingredients in our refrigerator so this recipe is a quick go-to.  

INGREDIENTS

1 bell pepper

1 english cucumber or 4-5 Persian cucumbers

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup kalamata olives, halved

1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion

1/2 cup crumbled feta

1 cup cooked Israeli couscous

3 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped

2 tablespoons fresh oregano

DRESSING INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon grated lemon zest

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

balsamic glaze to taste

DIRECTIONS

Chop cucumber, bell pepper, and tomatoes into half-inch pieces.  Combine with fresh herbs, red onion, kalamata olives, feta, and Israeli couscous in a large mixing bowl.  Toss with dressing.  Serve in a small bowl with balsamic glaze finish.

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