Couscous has been a saviour on weeknights. Even if we get home late, it's ready in a matter of minutes and its neutral flavour can be married with all kinds of ingredients. Make-ahead marinating chicken can be popped in the oven and there's no need to dial for pizza. This dish serves four.
To prepare the marinade, whisk together 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup strawberry balsamic vinegar (I used a delicious one from Kingston Olive Oil Company), 2T grainy mustard and 1T dried rosemary (double or triple this amount if you're using fresh herbs). Season with salt and pepper. Pour into a large Ziploc bag and add four boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Marinate for several hours or overnight.
Bake the chicken at 350°F for about 20 minutes, turning once.
Prepare 1-1/2 cups dry couscous according to package directions. Finely dice 1 small cucumber, 3 Bosc pears, and 1/2 red onion. Add to the couscous, along with 2/3 cup dried cranberries. I added 1/4 cup of leftover hazelnut crumbs, but in a pinch you could add slivered almonds instead.Toss gently to combine.
Slice the chicken and serve over top.