“Ferme” beetroot & lemon couscous salad


Ferme beetroot and lemon salad.jpg

This recipe was created by our community member Annemie Willemen @fermentist.be and www.fermentist.be. Thank you Annemie!

Ready to go list (for 4 as main dish)

  • Piece of circular hazelnut tempeh (@Beanlife)

  • About 800 g fresh beetroots 

  • ½ lemon 

  • Bunch of fresh dill

  • About 150 g soy yoghurt

  • 1 tbsp. tahini 

  • 2 tbsp. good olive oil (and some more)

  • 2 tbsp. cumin seeds 

  • 1 preserved lemon (about 40 g) & some of the storing juice (You can find this at the Moroccan market or… Surprise your friends! Make your very own “ferme” preserved lemons, see recipe attached.)

  • 1 cup of pearl couscous 


Let’s get those hands dirty!

Preheat the oven at 220 °C. Wrap your beetroots (with their peel on) in aluminium foil. (If they are really big, you can always cut them in half or four). Let them roast for 30 – 60 minutes in the oven. Start checking after 30 minutes. They are ready when your knife melts through. Get them out, unwrap and let cool a bit. Now you can peel of the skin very fine. I love this job. Cut them in slices of about ½ cm.

Cut the tempeh in dices as you like and let them marinate in about 4 tbsp. of the preserved lemon storing juice, flavour off with some black pepper (at least 30 minutes, longer always better). 

Cook 1 cup of pearl couscous in 2 cups of water with a pinch of salt. Once ready, set aside to cool down.

Preheat a pan on a middle pit fire, add 2 tbsp. of olive oil & 2 tbsp. of cumin seeds. Enjoy the sound of the popping seeds. Once they are popped, poor the oil and cumin seeds over the beetroots. 

Cut the preserved lemon (the whole thing! Yes the skin = delicious too, leave the pits out) & a good bunch of dill in fine pieces. Add to the beetroots and mix this all together with the pearl couscous & lemon juice of ½ lemon. Flavour off with pepper, salt and a bit of olive oil (taste!)

Mix together the soy yoghurt & tahini. Flavour of with some pepper (maybe some lemon juice?). 

Preheat a pan on medium height. Add some olive oil and fry the marinated tempeh cubes. Turn them around till you get a nice crunchy, gold brown end result.

Serve the salad with a finishing touch of some dill & nice dots of the tahini yoghurt. Create, share & enjoy.. 

“Ferme” lemons? Yes, you can! Make your own styled preserved lemons. Bring your next chicken stew to the next level or give a special touch to your couscous salad with your own styled preserved lemons. You can follow this recipe, but don’t forget to be creative with the herbs. Think about chili pepper, thyme, black pepper, honey,… 

Ready to go list

  • 10 lemons (organic label!)

  • About 200 g salt 

  • 2 laurel leaves

  • Star anise

  • Black peppercorns

  • Weckpot, right fit for 6 of your lemons


Fermentation preparation

Press the juice of four lemons and set aside. Wash & scrub the lemons under running water. Cut the lemons in at the top till about three-quarters. Add a tbsp. of salt to each of the lemons (in the cutting). Transfer the lemons together with the herbs and lemon juice into a nice weckpot. Fill up with water, so no air is left in the pot. Close it tightly and set aside for 3 weeks in a dark spot. The salt and oxygen-free conditions will promote the healthy micro-organisms to do their job & prevent the undesired ones to take over. Let the magic happen…