Hello! This is David & Luise. Remember us? During our almost eight years of blogging we have never left it silent for two months before. We’re going to do what we always do in these situations and blame the kids. Wether we miss a dentist appointment, forget to answer a text message, get a parking ticket or are two months late with a blog post, it’s always our kid’s fault. In this case however it’s actually somewhat true. We simply underestimated how much time and attention three kids on summer holiday takes. They have sooo much energy. I (David) have been thinking of ways to connect them (and with them I mean Isac) to the power grid so that they (he) could replace a nuclear power plant or two. And I could perhaps cash in a Nobel price for saving the world. Anyway, after a couple of weeks of feeling bad about not having a single second over to blog new recipes, we instead decided to give ourselves a summer break from it all. So we have been trying to keep up with our children’s pace (obviously impossible) and play on their rules (also impossible because they ignore rules) this summer. It’s been fun and much needed.
But we are here now with plenty of new recipe ideas and projects. Lots of other things have happened during the summer. We almost bought ourselves a tiny smoothie bar in a park, we burnt pancakes from Green Kitchen at Home inside a jam-packed little book store in Bath and we have planned the release of the European languages next month, but we’ll find time to talk more about all that. For now, let’s just talk food. Before the summer and watermelon season is all over.
This recipe has been going on repeat all summer. It’s actually a combination of two recipes which we recently realized work brilliantly together. A simple watermelon and halloumi salad and our Magic Green Sauce. We first got the idea to combine watermelon with halloumi from a recipe photo in a supermarket pamflett and from that combo, we’ve added some chickpeas, cherry toms and pumpkin seeds to make it less of a side and more of a meal. It’s a really nice combination. Rich and chewy halloumi, sweet and fresh watermelon, crunchy pumpkin seeds and a tangy, flavorful and slightly spicy sauce. If I wasn’t such a humble guy, I would say that it’s probably one of the best watermelon salads you’ll try this summer. Luckily, I’m super humble and will just say that it’s pretty good.
A simple vegan option would be to replace the halloumi with marinated tofu. Just make sure to squeeze out the liquid before marinating it, so it soaks up all the flavor. Quinoa, black lentils or rice could also be a great addition if you want to make this salad more substantial.
Here is a little salad assembling action by Luise.
Technically, the Magic Green Sauce is just our take on Chimichuri with a more hippie name. We use lime juice instead of vinegar and have added a little avocado to give it the right balance between creamy and chunky and also a few drips maple syrup to round off the sharpness from the other flavors. The magic lies in its ability to transfer any simple dish into something flavorful. Apart from this salad, we also use it on scrambled eggs, as a dip for raw crudités, inside rye sandwiches and on top of shakshuka. We have made it with a number of different herb combinations and found that anything goes (but parsley, cilantro/coriander and mint is still a fav).
Watermelon & Halloumi Salad with Magic Green Sauce
Watermelon & Halloumi Salad
1 kg / 2 lb watermelon
200 g / 7 oz halloumi
150 g / 1 cup good quality cherry tomatoes
1 can / 200 g / 1 cup cooked chickpeas
60 g / 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds / pepitas
2 large handfuls Mâche lettuce (or any tender lettuce)
2 tbsp olive oil
Magic Green Sauce
1 large handful (30 g / 1 tightly packed cup) mixed fresh herbs (we used parsley, cilantro and mint)
1/2 cup / 120 ml olive oil
Juice from 1 lime
1 tbsp capers
1 tsp maple syrup
1 clove garlic
1 small chili
1/2 tsp sea salt flakes
Start by preparing the sauce. Add all sauce ingredients to a food processor and pulse a few times until coarsely mixed, check the flavor and consistency and add more salt, herbs or oil if needed. If you don’t have a food processor, finely chops herbs, capers, garlic and chili, mash the avocado and mix everything in a bowl together with olive oil, lime juice and maple syrup. Add salt to taste. Then set aside.
Dice the watermelon and halloumi, quarter the tomatoes and rinse the chickpeas. Toast the pumpkin seeds on medium heat in a dry pan with a little salt until they begin to pop, then transfer them to a chopping board and chop coarsely. Add a little oil to the pan and fry the halloumi for a couple of minutes until golden on all sides.
Arrange the lettuce in a bowl or on a serving platter. Add chickpeas, tomatoes, watermelon and halloumi. Squeeze over a little lime juice and drizzle with oil and toss until mixed. Top with pumpkin seeds and Magic Green Sauce, with extra in the side. Enjoy!
We are off to Rome now to celebrate that it was 10 years ago that my drunk feet tried to seduce dance Luise on a club by the Tiber while simultaneously using ALL my Italian pick up lines on her (took me approx 1 hour before I realized that she was Danish and not Italian!). We’re bringing all the kids this time and we’d really appreciate a comment if you know any good places to eat, fun playgrounds, outdoor pools or your favorite gelato bars. Grazie!