Picnic Bruschetta Salad

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The salad is made with Israeli-style couscous, or another small pasta, cocktail tomatoes, and mozzarella. MATTHEW MEAD?/?Associated Press

It’s easy to love basic bruschetta — thick slabs of toasted bread topped with a heap of chopped tomatoes and shredded basil, then drizzled with olive oil.

But that heap of tomatoes and dribbling oil don’t exactly make for great picnic packing. So for a more portable take with the same great flavors, we transformed our favorite bruschetta into a cool couscous salad.

Perfect for a picnic, Israeli-style couscous actually is small pasta balls. If you can’t find it, feel free to substitute another small pasta. If you can’t find the small fresh mozzarella balls, just cut up a larger ball of fresh mozzarella.

Bruschetta Couscous Salad

Makes 10 servings

16 ounces Israeli couscous

? small red onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 ribs celery, finely diced

20 ounces cocktail tomatoes, quartered

? cup fresh basil leaves, torn

? cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup small fresh mozzarella balls

? cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Cook the couscous according to package directions. Allow to cool.

2. In a large bowl, combine the cooled couscous with the red onion, garlic, celery, tomatoes, basil, Parmesan, mozzarella, olive oil, and vinegar.

3. Stir to combine, then season with salt and black pepper.

4. The salad can be served immediately, but the flavors improve if it is allowed to sit for 30 minutes.

Per serving: 310 calories; ; 11 grams fat; 20 milligrams cholesterol; 40 grams carbohydrates; 11 grams protein; 180 milligrams sodium; 3 grams dietary fiber.