Melted cheese is awesome and all, but what about warm cheese that doesnâ€™t quite melt, but instead bears a crunchy outside and a soft, salty, cheesy inside? Halloumi brings just that.
Halloumi is originally from Cyprus and popular in Middle Eastern dishes. It has a very mild taste until grilled, when the real taste and texture get kickinâ€™.
When Iâ€™m craving a salty snack, Iâ€™ll sometimes cut off a slice from my halloumi chunk and cook it on the stove, til brown and crispy on both sides, and craving satisfied.
Tonight, I wanted the goodness of grilled vegetables, but with a halloumi finish. I used goat-cheese halloumi.
Baked Mediterranean Vegetables w/Halloumi
– 1 cup chopped eggplant
– 1 cup chopped zucchini
– 1/2 cup chopped red pepper
– 1 white onion, chopped
– 1/2 cup chopped tomato
– 2 cloves garlic, diced finely
– 2 tsp salt
– 1 tsp pepper
– 1/2 tsp paprika
– 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 3 oz halloumi
– 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
– drizzle olive oil
The prep is simple. Simply chop the vegetables so the piece are relatively the same sizeâ€”the size you like â€˜em. I like mine in about 1×1 inch pieces.
Spread out the veggies on aluminum foiled covered with extra-virgin olive oil.
Spread the vegetables so that each piece has its own place.
Season with salt, pepper, paprika and chopped garlic.
Pop in the oven for about 20 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
While the zucchini, eggplant, tomato, onion, red pepper, garlic and spices bake, prepare the halloumi. Traditionally, the cheese should be grilled, but I just simply cooked it over the stove. No oil involved, as the milk fat in the cheese is enough to prevent the burn.
Oh yeah babyâ€¦
DING A LING!â€¦looks like the veggies could use a good turnâ€¦
And some 10 minutes later, â€˜tis all done!
Chop the parsley.
Serve the baked vegetables with the parsley garnish and the halloumi atop it all.
So delicious. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil on top of the finished product and it will be radiating Mediterranean goodness.