Friday 29 July 2016

Foodie Friday - Lentil, Roasted Vegetable And Halloumi Salad

Hey Guys x Happy Friday x  I know Foodie Friday posts have been a bit thin on the ground this year but today I'm going to share with you one of my favourite and easiest, gluten free and vegetarian recipes, that proves that salad doesn't have to be boring.

If you've been reading my blog for sometime, or if you follow me on Instagram, then you'll already be quite familiar with this recipe or least what it looks like. I first discovered this recipe  last July in my first Hello Fresh box (you can read about my experience here) and it's rapidly become one of my go to dishes.

You can find the original Hello Fresh recipe of Lentil, And Chargrilled Vegetable Halloumi Salad here x and I have to say I love it but here I've made a few tweaks to make it just a little bit easier and even more flavourful.

In the original recipe the peppers and the courgette or either fried or char grilled. I normally use my George Foreman grill but since it's just a tiny one, it can take a while so in this version I decided to roast my vegetables in the oven instead. I also sprinkled them with a bit of lemon zest before I put oven and I added some extra lemon zest to my dressing to make it extra zesty.

Lentil, Roasted Vegetable And Halloumi Salad

1 x Large Courgette 
1 x Large Red Pepper 
1 x Can Green Or Brown Lentils
 1 x Lemon
Fresh Thyme 
1 Bag Of Rocket 
Pack Of Halloumi
Olive Oil
Salt And Pepper To Taste

1. Preheat your oven to 200° C, then rinse and dry your lemon, then zest or finely grate the peel into a small bowl.You just want the yellow parts as the white pith can be a bit too bitter.

2. Then chop your vegetables, my courgettes were quite small so I used two. Cut them in half length ways and then chop them into chunky half moons. Core and deseed your pepper, and cut it into similar size pieces. Again if their just small ones use two, you can also use yellow or orange peppers. Put the vegetables into a roasting dish or onto a baking try and drizzle over some olive oil, and a little bit of the lemon zest. Give it a mix so all of the vegetables are covered and then pop them into the over for around 20-30 minutes.

3.Now it's time to make your dressing, first of all juice half of your lemon, and put the juice into a small bowl.

Add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, a little bit more of the lemon zest and some salt and pepper. Then add a couple of sprigs of thyme (I used about 3 here). You just want the leaves so just run your fingers down the stalks and the leaves should come loose. You can used dry thyme at push but your probably won't need quite as much. Mix all of the ingredients together and set aside.

4. Now it time start opening tins and packets! First up the rocket and given the recent press coverage regarding salad leaves and e-coli, this stuff needs to be washed and washed well. Give it a good wash and rinse, then drain it and dry either by using a salad spinner or wrap it up in a tea towel to soak up the excess water.

5. Lentil time! Obviously you can cook your own - lentils are one of the easiest pulses to cook but for ease just open a tin of good green lentils. Again give them a good rinse and leave them to drain.

6. Next up, open your halloumi, and drain off the excess liquid that usually resided in the packet. Cut it into to thick slices, at least a centimetre wide. This wasn't a full packet so I only ended up with 5 slices - whoops!

7. Mix the remaining lemon zest with some olive oil 

and then coat your halloumi slices in the olive oil and lemon zest mixture.

8. Take a large salad bowl and then add your lentils 

and your washed and dried rocket.

9. Put your oil and lemon covered halloumi into a large pan, and turn the heat up to medium, and keep an eye on it, turning occasionally

10. By this time your vegetables should be about done, the courgettes and peppers should be soft, and slightly charred and crispy.

Take them out of the oven, and carefully pour the vegetables into the lentil and rocket mix and give it a stir

Then pour over your dressing  and give it a good stir, then add salt and pepper to taste and give it another gentle mix.

11. It can take a while but by this time your halloumi should be golden brown and crispy - be careful not to burn it.

12 Put the salad mix in to bowls,

top with the halloumi slices and serve.

This recipe easily feels two hungry people, but if you want it to feed more people, then just add some more veg and some more lentils and maybe a little bit more halloumi ( read about my love for halloumi here).

Whether you char grill your vegetables or whether you roast them in the oven, this is still a super tasty, filling and simple salad to make. Salad doesn't have to be boring and this dish definitely isn't - the salty halloumi, compliments the earthiness of  both the thyme and the lentils, the peppery taste of the rocket and the tang of the lemon perfectly.

This salad is pretty much perfect as it is but I guess you could mix it up a bit and use either a different pulse, or even a grain or rice as a base, and try maybe some different vegetables like aubergine or maybe red onion, and of course you could change the cheese, and sticking with the Mediterranean / Levant theme you could go for a feta or a goats cheese.

I love finding new recipes and thanks to buying the occasional Hello Fresh box I've lots of new recipes and new ingredients. Cooking for me is all about experimentation, and that's really why I love the Hello Fresh scheme, you get your box and your basic recipe, but then if you like it, you can make it again and again, changing cooking methods and ingredients based on what you like and what you have to hand.If you're interested in trying out some new recipes and trying out Hello Fresh for yourself then you can find out more about them here and you can use my coupon code A2NEYL * for £25 off your first box. Do you think salads are boring? Let me know your thoughts and your favourite salad recipes x

*Affiliate Coupon Code

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