Rebecca’s recipe of the week: Griddled Cucumbers

August 24, 2017 by General Administrator

This makes a great lunch. It’s quick, crunchy and surprising. Cooking a cucumber intensifies the flavour and gives it a crisp edge. The richness of the haloumi contrasts with the sweet bite of the tomatoes and the sharp, herby dressing pulls it all together. Eat with some crusty bread.

When I made this I used some of the wild marjoram that grows all over Dorset, but I think it would work well with other herbs, or a mixture of whatever you have to hand.

Griddled Cucumber with Haloumi
Serves 2

2 cucumbers
8-10 cherry tomatoes
half a packet of haloumi, sliced into tranches

for the dressing
handful of fresh marjoram, or oregano, or coriander, or parsley or a mixture of different herbs
100ml olive oil
juice of one lemon
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin—for optimal flavour, toast some whole cumin seeds in a dry pan, let them cool, and then grind them with a mortar and pestle.
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika (hot or sweet, as you prefer)—or less, to taste
pinch of cinnamon
salt and pepper to taste

Slice the cucumbers lengthwise into 1cm thick planks.

Heat a frying pan. A grill pan with ridges will leave attractive grill-lines on the cucumbers, if you have such a thing. Brush it lightly with oil and place some of the cucumbers in the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes, by which time the undersides should be attractively seared and the flesh should look a bit yellower. Turn them over and cook for another 3-5 minutes, until both sides are charred (but not burnt). Place them on an attractive serving platter. Griddle the remaining cucumbers in the same way.

Prepare the dressing while the cucumbers are cooking: whizz the fresh herbs together with the olive oil, lemon juice and seasonings to make a very thick dressing. Taste it to see if it needs more lemon juice. If it’s extremely thick you can thin it out with a bit more oil.

Slice the cherry tomatoes in half. Once the cucumbers are grilled, scatter the tomatoes over them.

When the cucumbers are done use the grill pan to griddle the haloumi. It should take about 3 minutes per side to develop a nice golden crust. Tuck the slices of haloumi amidst the cucumbers and tomatoes. Dot the dressing over the top and serve with crusty bread.

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