Sunday, 16 February 2014

Halloumi, cranberry and pistachio salad

Life behind this blog has been going some strange times. Organizational skills and planning ahead, hinting at the existence of any kind of discipline have taken a holiday. Shopping list for weekend, meticulously drafted at Wednesday at latest, maximizing the natural light I only get for a couple of hours during weekend, writing down recipes promptly while I cook... all that has been replaced with aimless loitering and evenings that continue into the early hours of next morning.

I've spent time in restaurants and living on meals prepared by others. Reports of those, too, have only been updated on the blog's Facebook page with a camera phone (!). The posts I have managed to get published have been waiting in the publishing queue for weeks. Day trips. Cafés. Gushing over neighbourhood specialty shops. Pondering why now it's so hip to look like the girls we used to make fun of back in school over pizzas unanimously voted as the best in Helsinki.

My thoughts have been all over the place. None of them kitchen. On my way home I've found myself at metro stations across the town, not having even realized I'd taken the wrong train. Instead of parsley I've brought home coriander in some serious need of palliative care. And I didn't even curse. Photos, too, are all over the place and I can't even seem to be able to focus on editing. The angle of the fringes of the napkins are all wrong. Cutlery doesn't match. I have actually even cooked dishes that have not been photographed, you know, simply out of pleasure of having someone to cook for. What is going on?

And so my latest ventures in the kitchen have really only produced material for the blog's "quick and easy"- section. Though some of them have been veritable triumphs. This halloumi salad is one of them. Halloumi has recently had another coming in my kitchen (cheese! Cheese in my kitchen!) and in this salad was accompanied with spring onions left over from the Spanish mussels, pistachios left over from Moroccan orange salad, dried cranberries that were part of a Christmas present from my out-of-this-world-adorable god daughter and that sweet, thick balsamico I brough back from Spain (that was also featured in the beet root risotto). Or... could it be it's the company that just makes everything taste so good? You try and tell me!

Serves four

2 packets of halloumi
100 g box of rucola
a generous handful of chopped spring onions
a generous handful (about 100 g) dried cranberries
a generous handful (about 100 g) unsalted pistachios
good, thick, sweet balsamico

Spread the rucola leaves and chopped spring onions on the serving plate. Scatter cranberries and pistachios on top. Cut halloumi to slices (about 3/4 cm in thickness) and fry them in a little bit of olive oil in hot pan so they get a beautiful golden colour. Place on the bed of rucola and drizzle balsamico on top. 




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