The birds are singing, the sun has been shining and I think I detected the sound of a distant lawn-mower….it looks like spring has finally sprung! The weather for the last couple of days has been lovely, almost like early summer rather than the end of March. It’s been so warm that we’ve been out in the garden and have planted out our seed potatoes and 100 sets each of red and white onions. All they need to do now is lie back in that lovely warm earth and grow!
Because it's been so unseasonally warm I made one of our favourite summer meals for dinner tonight, Halloumi with Couscous. It made such a nice change after all the heavy, warming meals of winter, really light and tangy, and I love the way the different flavours mingle in the couscous; it sets off the saltiness of the griddled Halloumi perfectly.
250ml very hot vegetable stock
8 sundried tomatoes in oil, chopped (from a jar)
1tbsp of oil from the tomato jar
1 shallot, finely chopped
6 chopped cherry tomatoes
20 pitted green olives, halved
50gm toasted pine nuts
1tbsp chopped chives
1tbsp chopped coriander
Olive oil for drizzling
Few chopped chives
Put the couscous in a large bowl, pour over the hot stock and stir in the oil, then cover and leave to stand for 10 minutes. Fluff up the couscous with a fork then add the shallot, both types of chopped tomato, olives, pine nuts, herbs and the juice of half the lemon. Mix well.
Cut the halloumi into 5mm thick slices, brush with olive oil and cook in a hot griddle pan until seared on both sides.
Serve the halloumi on a bed of couscous, squeeze over the juice from the remaining lemon half, drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with a few chopped chives.
Serves 2 as a main course or 4 as a starter.