Fig Pear and Halloumi Cheese Salad

Long time ago I saw some salad recipes with halloumi cheese but it didn’t triggered my interest until recently.  After doing a bit of research I figured out that halloumi cheese sometimes just called “grilling cheese”  is firm, salty and a bit rubbery. I have to mention that I’m not a a fan of salty cheese such as feta, but its suitability for grilling reminded me Lithuanian non-fermented white cheese. So I decided to give it a try… And it was worth it!

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With its unique flavor it’s not meant to be eaten plain! Halloumi should be warmed, grilled, or otherwise fired up in order to really be enjoyed. Cooked, the saltiness fades into a strong savory bite, with a slightly creamy texture and can be balanced by fresh and sweet fruits, such as pear, fig or watermelon.

Ingredients

2 servings

For salad

  • 1 large pear
  • 2 figs
  • 2 large handfuls green mix (or baby spinach)
  • 200 g halloumi cheese, drained
  • 1 handful walnuts

For dressing

  • 3 tbsp cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt to taste
  • fresh-ground black pepper

fig halloumi and pear salad4.1_wm

Directions

  1. Toast the walnuts in a dry frying pan over a high heat, moving them around the pan from time to time so they don’t burn. This will only take a couple of minutes. Put to one side.
  2. Cut halloumi cheese into 1cm slices, dry on paper towel and place it in a really hot frying or griddle pan, and give the slices a minute or so on each side. The cheese will soften slightly as it cooks.
  3. Wash and dry green mix, then spread them between two plates.
  4. Thinly slice pears and figs and place them in the plates with salad mix.
  5. Tear the pieces of halloumi over the salad.
  6. For balsamic vinaigrette whisk together olive oil and vinegar in a small bowl and pour immediately over the salad, then sprinkle with chopped roasted walnuts.

In this salad there’s so much going on from the fresh, crispy greens to the sweet figs, to the crunchy pear, to the salty halloumi and slightly bitter walnuts.  It just works beautifully. Enjoy!

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