Watermelon, halloumi, lime-pickled red onions
There have been a lot of great veggie cookbooks this summer but one of the most useful is Genevieve Taylor's Charred which finally empowers vegetarians to enjoy barbecues as much as meat eaters. That said this isn't the recipe in the book that makes the most extensive use of the grill but it's such a sublime combination of ingredients it's really summer on a plate.
Gen writes: OK, I’ll admit that no actual vegetables were grilled in the making of this salad but I hope you agree it is worthy of inclusion. And, after all, grilled halloumi with almost anything is very much worth eating. You cangrill watermelon (useful to know if your melon is a little underripe), but I do prefer its texture when eaten raw.
1 small red onion, very thinly sliced
zest and juice of 2 limes
2 tsp caster sugar
1kg (2lb 3oz) watermelon, about ½ medium-sized one
4 tbsp olive oil
3 x 250g (9oz) blocks of halloumi, cut into 1cm (½ inch) thick slices
a small bunch of coriander (cilantro), leaves roughly chopped
a small bunch of mint, leaves roughly chopped
50g (½ cup) pistachios, toasted and roughly chopped
Put the onion into a small bowl with the lime zest and juice and the sugar, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Set aside for about 30 minutes while you prepare the rest of the salad.
Cut the watermelon into 1cm (½ inch) thick wedges, trimming off the rind as you go. Spread over a large platter.
Fire up your barbecue ready for direct grilling, or heat up a griddle pan on the hob.
Drizzle a little of the oil over the halloumi (save the rest for the salad), then place directly over the heat on the grill bars. Cook for 2–3 minutes, until seared, then turn over with a fish slice and cook the other side. Once the halloumi is cooked, cut each slice in half on the diagonal and scatter over the watermelon.
Sprinkle over the coriander, mint and pickled onion slices, drizzling over the lime juice from the bowl too. Scatter thechopped pistachios over the salad Finish with a generous drizzle of olive oil and a grind of salt and pepper and serve immediately,while the halloumi is still warm.
What to drink: Any crisp fresh white would be great with this from an albarino to a sauvignon blanc.
Extracted from Charred by Genevieve Taylor, published by Quadrille at £16.99. Photograph © Jason Ingram.
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