Saturday, 10 May 2014

Chimichurri tomato salad with halloumi

It's been a while since my last post. It wasn't supposed to be that long... Life got a bit hectic this week. All good hectic, but no time for crafting, cooking or blogging. I saw friends, did pilates, and I can't even remember what I did on Tuesday and why I didn't have time to blog then, but it was something I'm sure. I was so tired last night I couldn't even be bothered to plan the weekend's cooking so we are going to have roast chicken this weekend. Again. Sigh. I am a failure as a food blogger! However, this morning I had a browse through the blogosphere and found this amazing recipe for chimichurri tomato salad on Tartelette. It looked so amazing that I had to try it out immediately!

Our own tomato season is still far away, although the tomato plants in the greenhouse are growing at lighting speed and a few flowers have already been spotted. Luckily the tomatoes in the grocery store have started to look red instead of that pale orange-y colour they have been all winter. So I bought myself a bunch of tomatoes and picked the herbs for the chimichurri right out of my own garden for this refreshing salad which is exploding with taste. The original recipe consists of the salad served with battered halloumi. I thougth I would keep it a bit healthier and just serve the halloumi lightly grilled without the panko crust, but hop over to the original blog post for a look for the crusted alternative.

Chimichurri tomato salad with halloumi (serves 2 as main or 4 as appetizer):
For the chimichurri:
1 cup parsley
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
4 cloves of garlic
1/3 cup chives
juice of one lemon
1/4 cup olive oil

For the salad:
1 lb (450 g) tomatoes
1/4 to 1/3 cup chimichurri
1/2 red onion
1 cup micro greens
1 lb (450 g) halloumi

The howto:
Take all the ingredients for the chimichurri and blitz them in a food processor until finely chopped. For the salad, slice the tomatoes and finely slice the onion. Mix all ingredients apart from the halloumi. Slice the halloumi into thick slices and pan fry over medium heat for a few minutes per side until it has turned golden. Serve immediately.

The verdict:
This is a super easy and quick salad. I think the chimichurri which is exploding with flavours from the parsley, chives and garlic goes really well with the salty halloumi. I served the salad with a bit of bacon on the side as well to appease the meat-eater in the house (and we had a few slices of bacon which needed using up so I thought why not). I was afraid that the combination of the salty bacon and halloumi would be to much, but it was well balanced by the strong flavours of the chimichurri and the sweet tomatoes. I can't wait to make this from my own tomatoes, which will be even more sweeter than the store bought ones. 

I have to admit, the measures in the recipe above are directly from the Tartlette recipe. When I made my salad, I couldn't be bothered to measure anything, just used what I thought would be a good amount of the ingredients and made a serving for two (I used 3 big red tomatoes and 4 medium sized yellow tomatoes, 2 cloves of garlic, 125 g halloumi and the rest of the ingredients to taste). If you have any chimichurri left after making the salad, it keeps for a day or two in the fridge and goes great with grilled beef


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