Lorna’s Cooking School with Allyson Gofton: Olive and Couscous Salad

Publish Date
Wednesday, 8 April 2015, 12:24PM

If you don’t know your couscous from your quinoa, let alone how to make couscous into a delicious quick and easy salad for the family, then check out the latest episode of my cooking school. As a bonus, Allyson Gofton shows us how to segment an orange perfectly so no pith or skin makes its way into your dish. Throw on some lamb cutlets (Allyson even has a quick tip to make these the best ever) and voila! a family meal that’s done in minutes and will have everyone smiling

Moroccan Lamb Cutlets with Olive and Couscous Salad
Create this sensational couscous salad by rubbing couscous with finely chopped, meaty black olives and fresh, gutsy marjoram. The couscous remains light and fluffy - making a perfect base for the ras-el-hanout spiced lamb cutlets.

Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time:
10 minutes

10-12 lamb cutlets, Frenched
2 tablespoons ras-el-hanout
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons minced garlic
½ cup oil (extra virgin olive oil is nice here)

Olive and couscous salad:
1½ cups instant couscous
2 oranges
20-24 black olives, stoned
½ cup finely chopped fresh marjoram and oregano
½ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
¼-½ cup finely chopped dried apricots or glace quince
1 teaspoon honey or sugar


  1. In a sealable bag, put the lamb cuts, ras-el-hanout, thyme, garlic and half the oil. Seal the bag and massage well. Set aside to marinate while preparing the salad.

  2. Put the couscous into a large bowl and pour over 1½ cups of boiling water. Stand for 7-10 minutes or until the water has been absorbed. Pour over the remaining oil, fluff with a fork and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave for 1 minute on high and fluff again. Cool.

  3. Grate the rind from the oranges. Cut away and discard the white pith and finely slice the flesh. Chop the olives finely. Add to the couscous with the orange rind and rub with your hands to mix well. Add the orange slices, herbs, apricots or quince and honey or sugar and use a fork to gently mix in. Season with pepper.

  4. Arrange the couscous on a serving platter, adding a few salad leaves such as rocket, watercress, baby spinach or torn iceberg leaves if wished.

  5. Pan-fry or barbecue the lamb cutlets over a moderately high heat for 2-3 minutes on each side or until cooked to medium-rare. For medium, cook for 1 extra minute on each side. Arrange the cutlets on top of the salad and serve. If wished, serve with a jug of Allyson's favourite honey and cider dressing.

Find more great recipes from Allyson Gofton at www.allysongofton.co.nz.

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