MIDDLE EAST - JERUSALEM

FIG & HALLOUMI

SALAD .

with pecan nuts, pomegranate seeds and sugar-snap peas.

There are few things as pungently distinctive as walking through a local market and passing by a stall laden with fresh figs – what a treat! This is the particular smell that I will take away with me from our whirlwind time in Jerusalem, and so this little salad pays homage to that beautiful sensory memory.

 

Paired with the saltiness of the halloumi, encrusted it that definitive of all Middle Eastern spice mixes, Za’atar, and the slight sweetness of the honey and sumac dressing -  this is a salad that incorporates so many of my favourite ingredients found throughout the many markets of this exceptionally complex and ever-dynamic city.

Serves 2

 

  • 100g SUGAR SNAP PEAS

  • 100g HALLOUMI CHEESE

  • 2 tsp ZA’ATAR MIX

  • small bag ROCKET

  • 2 fresh FIGS {cut into quarters}

  • 75g whole PECAN NUTS {roughly chopped}

  • handful fresh MINT

  • ½ cup POMEGRANATE SEEDS

 

FOR THE DRESSING:

  • 6 tsp OLIVE OIL

  • 3 tsp LEMON JUICE

  • 2 tsp BALSAMIC VINEGAR

  • 2 tsp RUNNY HONEY

  • 1 tsp SUMAC

  • SALT

  • BLACK PEPPER

 

 

Top and tail the sugar snap peas and then place into a pan of salted boiling water. Cook for about 3 minutes. They want to still have a bite to them. Once cooked, drain from the pan, cut them in half and then set aside in a separate bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil and a small pinch of salt and pepper.    

 

Cut the halloumi into strips about 1cm thick. Place the za’atar mix on a plate, add a small amount of olive oil and them coat all the strips evenly with the za’atar. We want to create a nice crust to the cheese.

 

Heat a griddle pan to a medium heat. Place on the halloumi and fry until evenly golden on both sides, then remove and place on some kitchen paper.

 

Mix all of the elements of the dressing together in a serving jug and then place to one side. 

 

Time to assemble the salad. In a large serving bowl place a layer of rocket, and then on top goes a nice little arrangement of the quartered fresh figs, the halloumi and the sugar snap peas. Then scatter over the pecans, a generous amount of fresh mint and a good covering of pomegranate seeds (the mint and the pomegranate give an amazing little refreshing kick to the whole salad).

 

Pour over the dressing and you’re good to get stuck in. Transfer to separate plates or just tuck in together.    

 

 

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