These halloumi kebabs are one of our favourite meals and even though they are quite summery we eat them all year round. I’m a big fan of halloumi (despite the fact that it’s often badly behaved and tends to split when you’re trying to skewer it!) and this is a great way to eat it.
The star of the dish is the fantastic marinade which comes from Rose Elliot, a hero of vegetarian cookery in the UK (and hopefully beyond). I don’t know whether this features in any of her books but I found it in the July 2013 issue of Vegetarian Living magazine. It’s beautifully savoury and sweet and I love the hint of hotness that comes from the raw crushed garlic. It does contain honey but you could switch that with maple syrup or sugar if you want to make a vegan version.
Just the line-up of marinade ingredients makes my mouth water. I really have to resist just eating the marinade with a spoon before it gets to the kebabs! The quantities I give below make plenty for 2 people/4 skewers but it’s easily multiplied for more.
When it comes to the skewers you can use whatever you like. The original recipe used halloumi, red and yellow peppers and bay leaves. I don’t use the bay leaves and prefer a wider selection of vegetables. On this occasion I used halloumi, mushrooms, red onion and red and yellow pepper. The mushrooms and red onion are non-negotiable for me! I also like thick slices of courgette but I didn’t have one to hand.
Our local Turkish restaurant goes for a more halloumi-heavy kebab just interspersing the pieces of halloumi with red pepper and serving the other veg on the side. I’ve also skipped the halloumi altogether when taking these to barbecues (it tends to fall off on the barbecue) and they’ve still been a hit. People will ask you for the recipe!
So do feel free to do your own thing when it comes to putting the skewers together.
I usually serve these halloumi kebabs with Ainsley Harriot’s Spice Sensation Cous Cous and some salad leaves. There are a few convenience foods that I really like and this ‘instant’ cous cous is one of them but you can of course prepare your own cous cous or serve something else altogether.
- 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 small red onion
- 8 mushrooms
- 1/2 red pepper
- 1/2 yellow pepper
- 1 small courgette
- 250g packet halloumi
- 4 kebab skewers
- Mix all of the marinade ingredients together.
- Cut the onion into 8 chunks. If you leave the root intact, it will hold the layers together.
- Cut 4 pieces of each colour pepper.
- Cut the courgette into 8 thick slices.
- Cut the halloumi into 4 thick slices and then halve each to give you 8 chunks. The halloumi does tend to split when you are cutting or skewering it. Just do it carefully and if you do have a complete disaster you can always grill it alongside.
- Thread on to kebab sticks, alternating the different ingredients.
- Place the kebabs in a single layer on a shallow roasting tin or baking tray.
- Brush half the marinade over the kebabs.
- Cook under a medium grill for 5-10 minutes. You're aiming to cook the veg without burning the marinade.
- Turn the kebabs over and brush with the remaining marinade.
- Grill for a further 5-10 minutes until the cheese is golden and the veg have started to soften.
- Serve straight away while the grilled halloumi is at its best.