I love halloumi. The salty, squeakiness is irresistible in my household, so we always have a block or two in the fridge ready for when the fridge is a little bare.
Although I am probably part of a small minority who actually likes halloumi cold, although I am in agreement that hot, crispy, golden and squidgy halloumi is the best. Even when it’s not barbecue season, I still eat it, either by frying it in a pan as part of a mean vegetarian brunch, or roasting it in the oven till it is crispy and golden on the top.
While halloumi is high in salt and fats including saturated fat, as is often found with cheeses, it is a good source of non-meat protein, especially for those wishing to reduce their meat intake. I try to use halloumi less often because of the salt content, and to help combat this when cooking with it I never season the dish with salt.
If you have the time and the will, stick the halloumi and peppers onto the barbecue to get a lovely charred flavour. The remaining ingredients can be cooked as normal in the oven, and then combine the two together to finish the dish.
I love this dish served with simple herbed couscous. You could of course serve it with rice, bulgar wheat, potato salad or even some garlic flatbreads. Alternatively, to make only one dish dirty, slice potatoes into large wedges and roast in the tray for 25 minutes with a little extra oil. Then top with the chickpeas and vegetables and carry on roasting.
- 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 bell peppers, cut into large chunks
- 1 large or two small red onions, sliced into wedges through the root
- 200g baby plum tomatoes
- 2 cloves of garlic, skin on
- 3 sprigs oregano, leaves removed from stems
- 1 red chilli, to taste, diced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 100g halloumi, sliced into large chunks
- 100g couscous
- Chives, finely chopped
- Flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180°C fan, 190°C convection
- Mix all the ingredients except the halloumi together in an oven-proof dish. Season with pepper to taste.
- Lay the halloumi over the top and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes till the halloumi turns golden brown and the vegetables have softened.
- Meanwhile, prepare the couscous by pouring 110ml boiling water over the top of the couscous with the chives and covering. Allow to steam for 5 minutes before fluffing the grains with a fork. Mix the flat-leaf parsley through.
- Serve the chickpea and halloumi bake over the couscous and enjoy.
Per serving: 661kcal/ 25.2g fat/ 10.8g saturated fat/ 38.2g carbohydrates/ 14.2g fibre/ 26.5g protein