Monday, 4 August 2014

Herby Courgette and Halloumi Pasta

I know I know, another healthy(ish) recipe. I'll make up for it by helping you clog your arteries soon enough.

Again, you may have a problem with gorging on this one as it is seriously moreish. I like making it with little almost macaroni type pasta but if you're a Rigatoni/over-sized shell/alien hair-do type, please be my guest.

This recipe requires a tad more prep due to the green-ness and that wonderfully charred halloumi you see before you. I can tell you it's so worth it. You can also make a batch and have it for lunch the next day. And supper the next day. Amazing.

I must warn you, you will get green in your teeth so don't make it on date, bring a mirror or have a teeth-checking-buddy prepped.

Herby Courgette and Halloumi Pasta

Quantities: 4 servings

Timings: About 30 mins if you're organised.

Kitchen Stuff: 

Medium Saucepan, Large frying pan, chopping board, food processor of some sort

250g strozzapreti, penne, rigatoni or big macaroni pasta
2-3 medium courgettes, thinly sliced (mandolin or food processor helps here)
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Thumb of parmesan, grated
big bunch of basil, chopped (a couple of leaves saved for garnish)
small bunch of parsley, leaves chopped
5-6 tbsp (1/3 cup) olive oil 
One block of Halloumi
150g (3/4/ cup) Petit Pois
1-2 tbsp capers
2-3 tbsp plain flour
Squeeze of lemon


PASTA: Boil some salted water in a medium saucepan. Add your pasta to the water and simmer for 8-9 mins or until pasta is al dente. When ready, DO NOT throw your pasta water away, see pasta revisited.

COURGETTE: Whilst the pasta is simmering, heat 1-2 tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan on a medium heat. Toss your courgette slices in a few of tablespoons of plain flour seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper until lightly coated. Throw them in the pan.

Fry until soft and slightly browning, then remove from pan. You may need to fry in batches if there are a lot of courgettes - don't add too many to the pan at once.

Tip: To coat your courgette slices in flour - If you have a brown paper bag, throw everything in there and give it  shake. Alternatively, lay the slices on a chopping board, sprinkle them all with seasoned flour then move to a bowl and mix with your hands.

PASTA REVISITED: Don't throw your pasta water away, remove the pasta with a slotted spoon and put it in a colander to drain. Once drained, put in large serving bowl.  Add the peas to the pasta water and boil for a few minutes until ready, then combine with pasta in serving bowl.

HERBY HANCOCK: To make the herb mixture - combine the chopped basil, chopped parsley, grated parmesan and 5-6 tbsp olive oil  in a food processor or blender. Mix until smooth. Season with black pepper and coarse sea salt.

Mix the pasta, herby mixture, fried courgettes, 1-2 tbsp capers (to your taste) and a squeeze of lemon together.

HALLOUMI: Slice the halloumi into about 1/2cm slices and dry-fry in the same frying pan for a few mins either side until soft and browned. 

Add the Halloumi to the pasta and serve whilst Halloumi is still hot. Nom nom nom.