Pistachio couscous and jewelled halloumi

Richard Corrigan's fragrant couscous would be a meal in itself or a marvellous accompaniment to grilled meat or chicken
By Richard Corrigan
Pistachio couscous and jewelled halloumi
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes plus 5 minutes standing time
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

For the pistachio couscous

  • 250 g couscous
  • 125 ml orange juice, (zest of 1 orange reserved)
  • 1 lemon, zest and 2 tbsp juice only
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • olive oil, for drizzling
  • 35 g currants
  • 50 g chopped pistachio nuts, plus extra for garnish
  • 400 g cooked chickpeas
  • 3 tbsp chopped parsley, plus extra leaves for garnish
  • 150 g pomegranate seeds, (about1½ pomegranates)
  • 20 g fresh mint leaves, shredded

For the halloumi

  • extra virgin olive oil, for dressing and frying
  • red wine vinegar, for dressing
  • lemon juice, for dressing
  • 250 g halloumi cheese, cut into 1cm slices

Method

1. For the pistachio couscous: put the couscous into a large, heatproof bowl.

2. Pour the orange and lemon juice into a measuring jug, then add enough water to make up to 300ml. Pour the juice into a saucepan, stir in the lemon and orange zest and the cinnamon and bring to the boil.

3. Remove the mixture from the heat, pour over the couscous, cover and leave for 5 minutes.

4. Drizzle over a little olive oil and fluff up with a fork, then fold in the currants, pistachios, half the chickpeas and the chopped parsley.

5. For the halloumi: whisk a little olive oil, red wine vinegar and lemon juice together for a vinaigrette dressing and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Set aside until ready to serve.

6. Heat some olive oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan and fry the halloumi slices in batches for 1 minute on each side, until they're a nice golden-brown colour. Remove from the pan and keep warm.

7. To serve, arrange the couscous on a serving plate and scatter over the pomegranate seeds and the remaining chickpeas. Top with the warm halloumi slices and sprinkle with extra chopped pistachios, the shredded mint and parsley. Spoon over the dressing.

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