This week at I Heart Cooking Clubs, we're conjuring up Donna Hay dishes which are "Fast & Fabulous" - dishes which can be made in 30 minutes or less.
This dish definitely fits the bill on both fronts. It could not have been faster - about 20 minutes all up, and that included a visit to the garden to pick a lemon, a few nasturtium flowers and a bunch of fresh mint. I'd like to say I picked the zucchini as well, but although my zucchini plant is flowering and producing they were not quite ready for picking.
It was also definitely fabulous on many levels ... great textural contrast between the crisp zucchini, velvety spinach leaves, and chewy, melted cheese; wonderful, robust flavours - bright, herby mint, tangy, sour pomegranate molasses, the sharp saltiness of preserved lemon, and a little bit of heat from the chilli; and, no slouch in the looks department either - this was a very pretty dish and one which would certainly wow your guests despite the miniscule time spent on it.
I made a few minor changes to the original recipe. I cut back the pomegranate molasses as it is a strong flavour and I felt the quantity specified was a bit much, and added a little bit of olive oil to help distribute the pomegranate molasses through the salad. I also added a bit of preserved lemon for a little extra zing. I will certainly be making this salad many times over this summer, and although this would make a great accompaniment to a bigger meal, I was more than happy to make a meal of it on its own.
Zucchini, Mint & Haloumi Salad Recipe
Adapted from recipe by Donna Hay
from Fast, Fresh, Simple
Serves 2 as a light meal or appetiser, or
Serves 1 person as a substantial meal
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe
2x small-medium zucchini
large handful of mint leaves, finely shredded
large handful or two of baby spinach leaves
flaky sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
1/4 of a preserved lemon, flesh discarded and skin finely sliced
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
200g haloumi, thinly sliced
extra virgin olive oil for brushing & drizzling
pinch dried chilli flakes
1x lemon halved
Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Brush haloumi lightly with olive oil on both sides, and sprinkle over dried chilli flakes. Add haloumi and lemon (cut-side down) to the preheated pan. Cook the haloumi until golden brown on both sides, by which time the lemon flesh will also be golden and caramelised.
Meanwhile, cut the zucchini into juliennes, and add to a medium sized bowl together with the shredded mint, preserved lemon, pomegranate molasses, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss gently until everything is combined.
To serve, arrange salad on plates and top with a few slices of the haloumi. Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and squeeze over the caramelised lemon.
If you would like to get to know Donna Hay a little better, and to see all the wonderful fast and fabulous dishes my friends have come up with, then do go visit I Heart Cooking Clubs and check out the links.
I'll also be sharing this post this week at See Ya In the Gumbo hosted by the lovely Michelle at Ms. enPlace, Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth at Beth Fish Reads, Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays hosted by my special friend Deb at Kahakai Kitchen, and at Foodie Fridays hosted by Designs by Gollam.