This was one of those accidental salads that worked so well I felt duty bound to write it down and share it with you. Therefore, apologies for the photo because, as so often happens, it wasn’t until it was half-eaten that I realised how good it was!
(Edit: I’ve recently made it again and improved the photo and, as you can see added a few different ingredients. One of my friends described it as the best thing she’d eaten for weeks!)
It’s a really good, hearty, healthy salad that tastes delicious, fills you up, looks interesting and takes minutes to make. It stores well too, if there’s any left.
- 150g halloumi
- 2 cups cauliflower ‘micro florets’
- 1 cup cooked beluga or puy lentils (I buy the Merchant Gourmet sachets when I’m in a hurry) and/or peas and broad beans
- 50g pine nuts (toasted if you like) or pumpkin seeds or walnuts
- 1 ridge cucumber cut into 1cm dice
- Generous handful of pitted black olives
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh herbs (basil, mint, coriander, parsley, wild garlic)
- 1 tbsp finely chopped dried seaweed
- 1 or 2 spring onions, finely chopped
- a good slug of XVOO
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Cut your chunk of halloumi into 5mm slices and dry fry until golden brown and slightly crispy on both sides. Allow to cool and break slices into 4 pieces to add to your salad.
- While the halloumi is cooking, make your cauliflower micro florets by cutting the cauliflower in half then taking a boning or paring knife and running it about 1cm underneath the cauliflower florets, separating the florets from the stalk. You will end up with dozens of tiny cauliflower pieces and a prehistoric looking stalky bit that you can set aside to roast or purée later. It’s very quick, honest!
- Add the halloumi and cauliflower micro florets to a large mixing bowl with the lentils, pine nuts, cucumber, olives, and the rest of the ingredients, tossing it all thoroughly to blend the flavours.
- Works well with any sort of roasted meats, grilled fish, or simply with a wild rocket salad and a blob of cottage cheese.
To add extra hint of flavour to any salad, rub a cut clove of garlic around the inside os the salad bowl before adding the ingredients.
Since this salad happened by accident, you can pretty much vary any of the ingredients to make a happy accident of your own! Cooked courgette would work well in place of cucumber, broccoli instead of (or as well as) cauliflower, any type of nuts, a handful of raisins… the options are endless.
If you are extremely carbohydrate sensitive, or following a completely strict ketogenic diet you could leave out the lentils.