On the Table

Staff Writer
Columbus Parent

School seems to be starting earlier than usual this year, so I know my usual school-year menus such as chili and hearty broccoli soup, won't work just yet. Instead, I plan to keep taking advantage of the summer's harvest tomatoes, bell peppers and cucumbers to create cooling, but substantial dinner fare.

Grilled Chicken with Couscous Salad

Makes 6 servings

This recipe turns couscous into a salad topped with grilled chicken - perfect for hectic back-to-school evenings that are still summer-hot.


  • 2 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt or 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 box (10 ounces) plain couscous
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 large tomatoes, halved, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/3-inch thickness
  • Salt and pepper to taste

To make couscous: Combine broth, 1 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon salt, cinnamon and cumin in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add couscous. Remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes.

Fluff couscous with a fork. Transfer to a large bowl. Add cucumber, bell pepper and tomato. Whisk lemon juice, remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon oil in a small bowl. Pour over salad. Toss to coat.

To make chicken: Prepare grill (medium heat) or preheat grill pan.

Combine oil and lemon juice in a small bowl. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Drizzle with lemon-juice mixture.

Grill chicken until cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.

Transfer chicken to cutting board. Cut into strips. Arrange atop salad.

PER SERVING: 432 calories; 36 g protein; 44 g carbohydrates; 4 g fiber; 12 g fat (2 g saturated); 68 mg cholesterol; 501 mg sodium