Nigella Lawson's Double Potato and Halloumi Bake

8/05/2010 07:41:00 PM

Mmm... super carb power!

The past couple of weeks have been a bit of a blur - moving offices, heaps of social engagements and a nasty bout of the flu. So obviously my normal cooking routine has gone out the window, in favour of canapes, dodgy non-Japanese Japanese takeaway and other not-so-fabulous options.

Now that things have calmed down a bit, I'm making a concerted effort to cook and eat a bit better! I realised that one of the main barriers to my cooking most nights (and this comes from a girl who obviously, loves to cook!) is having to actually choose what to cook. Sounds silly, I know, but often on a weeknight I'll have the time, but won't be able to decide on what to make. And by the time I've dithered about it enough it's 7:30 and I then I'll just go and get some takeaway.

On Tuesday at work, I thought: enough! I decided to make something that I've wanted to for ages, but never got around to - Nigella's double potato and halloumi bake, from Nigella Bites.

I decided on the recipe during the day, bought the ingredients on the way home from work, prepared it when I got home, and BAM! Dinner was on the table in an hour. Even managed to have a shower and do the dishes while it was cooking.

It's ridiculously easy. Just chop up a couple of potatoes (both sweet and normal), a capsicum, a red onion and chuck them in a tray with a bit of oil and some unpeeled garlic cloves. It goes in the oven for an hour. For the last 10 minutes or so, you turn the heat right up and cover the lot in thin slices of halloumi, letting them get all melty and crisp.

I also made a simple cucumber salad to go with...

... and a fried egg for Sandra.

This was a super-comforting dinner, but surprisingly not too heavy! I think it helps that there's no meat, and that the cheese is sliced very thinly. I love the warm Autumnal colours of the dish, and the contrast between salty (halloumi), bland (potatoes) and sweet (sweet potatoes, red onion and capsicum). I sprinkled over some chopped chives for a colour contrast and some extra flavour, which I think was a good move. Absolutely fabulous. I must return to my Nigella books for more cooking inspiration!

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  1. I love this dish! A good way of stretching out halloumi.

    And I definitely understand the whole "what the heck do I even cook" thing. I really need to plan a bit further in advance.

  2. Anonymous9:43 PM

    what herb did you sprinkle over the cucumber salad?

  3. Haha I can imagine you standing there deciding what to make.

    What's the ration of vinegar to sugar and other things for that pickled cucumber?

    Then it's just cream cheese and butter on the bread right?

  4. This is one of my favourite recipes. We have made it many times but the best version I ever made was while living in London and I got the freshest of fresh halloumi at Borough Market. The quality of the cheese stood out. it is a great meal for a night when you feel like having a lighter dinner, hence no meat but the halloumi still gives you a deep satisfaction. Here is the same dish on my blog if you would like to read my take on it:

  5. I have this same problem too, although it usually leads to me eating oatmeal for dinner, rather than getting takeaway :) I love the sound of this meal, though, particularly as I've been meaning to try halloumi (well, I ate it a few times years and years ago, but I want to reintroduce it to me)!

  6. I sometimes have that problem too, not knowing what to cook, I always like to find something a bit different too.

  7. Oh yum - roast veg with the added deliciousness of halloumi. I will try this next time :-D

    I know what you mean about weeknight dinners too - I get home fairly early most days (before 4pm) so there's plenty of time to cook - but deciding on WHAT is always tricky...especially with a BF who replies to the question "What do you want for dinner" with "FOOD". *le sigh*

  8. You're inspiring me again!
    Did you hear Nig's new book will be out next month? 500 pgs! Woot!

  9. Laura - Halloumi can be expensive, hehe this is a good way to use it up. I need to plan too. And oops, it's Sunday night and I don't know what I'm cooking this week. GRA!

    Anon - It was a mixture of chives and dill!

    Thanh - 1 tbs white wine vinegar, 1 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt, lots of pepper, 1 tbs chopped dill. And yes, just cream cheese and butter on the bread.

    Jutta - You're right, the quality of the halloumi would be really important!

    Hannah - I think oatmeal would be a much more sensible dinner than what I've been eating lately!

    My Melbourne Restaurants - I think that's the challenge, finding something a bit different that's not too difficult or time-consuming!

    Esz - LOL! With that answer, let him fend for himself! ;)

    Lisa - Pre-ordered already!!!!!!!!!!!! Do I feel another project coming on?

    xox Sarah

  10. mmmm carbalicious!
    Yes I'm having to start to eat better too... We have a new rule at home.. "no more seconds!".. need to try and lose weight already :P

  11. haha- I'm the same. Most weeknights I tend to flutter around the kitchen. If one ingredient is missing, even if not essential, I'd give up and get take out!!!

  12. Oh Good God, this is for me!

  13. i have been saying the same thing, i need to get back into my nigella books and start cooking!
    have you pre-ordered her upcoming cookbook?



My email address is sarahcooks [at] hotmail [dot] com.