Posted on : 20/05/2017
Vegetarian Cooking: Griddled Halloumi and Summer Vegetables with Tomato and Fennel Sauce Basil Oil and Black Olive Puree
In celebration of National Vegetarian Week, we thought we would bring you one of Jim’s special vegetarian recipes, which shines the light on vegetarian cooking and enables you to present a wow dish to your friends. This one’s a winner whether or not your are vegetarian. To add an extra wow factor, sprinkle with seasoned giant cous cous as shown in the photo above. If you would like to have more inspiration for vegetarian cookery, we have a range of vegetarian and vegan cookery classes to suit. Our next vegetarian cookery course is on (click here to book) and our first ever vegan cookery course with Belinda Connolly will be on 24th June (click here to book).
And what’s more, if you want to make your own halloumi cheese for this vegetarian recipe, you will be able to learn how to make halloumi on 1st June with cheese making expert Louise Talbot.
2 large handfuls of fresh basil, stalks and all
500ml extra virgin rapeseed oil
Black Olive Puree
500g pitted black olives in oil
Tomato and Fennel Sauce
8 ripe plum tomatoes slice lengthwise into quarters
2 medium onions, peeled, ‘root’ attached & cut into 16 wedges
2 bulbs of Florence fennel, trimmed of outer layers, ‘root’ attached & cut into 16 wedges
Sprig of rosemary and thyme
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
12 black olives, pitted and halved
The thinly pared zest and the juice of an orange
2 measures Noilly Prat or dry vermouth
1 measure Pernod or Pastis
1 wine glass dry white wine
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp salt
Griddled Summer Vegetables
4 courgettes, topped, tailed and cut into chunky slices
2 aubergines, tailed and cut into thick disks
2 fennel bulbs, topped, tailed and sliced into eight segments each
4 onions, peeled and each cut into eight segments keeping the root intact
Extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
500g fresh Halloumi cheese
Olive oil for brushing
Sea salt and ground black pepper
- Blanch the basil leaves in boiling salted water until just wilted, but still a vibrant green. Transfer to a muslin-lined sieve set over a bowl and drain overnight. Separate the green oil from the watery basil liquid underneath. Discard this watery liquid and pour the basil oil into a squirty bottle.
- Blend the black olives with their oil to a smooth puree, adding more olive oil if required. Reserve in a squirty bottle.
- Pre-heat the oven to 200°C
- Place all the sauce ingredients into a roomy baking tray and tumble them around so they each get a coating of the various liquids and seasonings.
- Pop into the oven and roast for 30 to 45 minutes until tender. Toss everything over once or twice and it’s nice if some of the edges of the vegetables get a little toasted because colour means flavour.
- Blend to a fine puree and pass through a fine sieve. Adjust the seasoning. Pour some of the sauce into a squirty bottle and reserve. Freeze the remainder.
- Brush the prepared summer vegetables, season with salt and pepper, then griddle on high heat until marked, but not cooked through. Remove to a baking parchment lined tray to cool to room temperature.
- Slice the Halloumi into finger thick slices, brush with a little olive oil and season. Place on the hot griddle pan to mark both sides.
- Arrange the griddled vegetables and Halloumi on your chosen serving plates. Drizzle the sauce and two oils around and serve.