I could literally have this Corn and Fregola with Grilled Halloumi once or twice a week and never get tired of it. The toasted fregola (similar to Israeli couscous), charred corn, toasted walnuts, herbs and citrus make this one incredible side salad. What makes this too, is the grilled Halloumi cheese. I never knew you could grill cheese with out it melting, did you?
This is a fantastic salad or side dish, is healthy, filling and a snap to make. Who needs to turn on the oven, use the grill.
Halloumi cheese is similar to paneer cheese in that both can pan fried or grilled and not melt into a gooey mess. Not bad for a grilled cheese sandwich, who doesn’t love that, but this is a new one for me and it’s oh so good! The texture is meaty when cut thick as I did here then a brush of some olive oil and salt and on the grill it went. It held it’s shape and grilled away, getting char marks and that lovely smoke flavor. Halloumi is found in most Greek and Mediterranean markets and Paneer cheese is found in Indian markets.
Poking around in the fridge I had lots of corn on the cob and I love to grill them, but decided on busting out that stack of recipes I wanted to try that I tore out of Bon Appetit while I was flying to Nashville a few weeks back. More of those will be seen here, too. Crazy amount of tasty recipes in that magazine.
There was one with grilled corn and fregola, which is similar to Israeli couscous, a favorite of mine, and I decided to make it with these wonderful spicy sausages I had to grill. It would be the perfect side dish with a bounty of good stuff like toasted walnuts, basil, mint and some lemon and vinegar. Honestly, if I didn’t have the sausage, both Dave and I both said we could easily just eat this alone and be completely satisfied.
Hope you give this a try and enjoy it as much as we did. It is going to be on the house rotation for a while!
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1 cup fregola or Israeli couscous
- pinch of kosher salt
- 4 ears of corn, husked
- 2 tbsp plus ¼ cup olive oil, divided
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 8 oz Halloumi cheese, sliced lengthwise ¾-inch thick
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- ½ cup fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
- ¼ cup basil leaves
- ¼ cup mint leaves
- 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbsp (or more) white wine vinegar
- Toast the walnuts in a small sauté pan over medium heat, tossing often, until golden brown and fragrant, 3 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
- Cook fregola in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Drain, but do not rinse, and spread out on a baking sheet to cool.
- Get your grill on to a medium-high heat. Rub corn with a tablespoon of oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill, turning occasionally, until lightly charred and tender, 10 minutes or so depending on size of corn ears. Transfer to a platter and let cool.
- Meanwhile, brush cheese with another tablespoon of oil and grill, turning once, until lightly charred on each side, about 5 minutes. Transfer to platter with corn and let cool.
- Cut the kernels from corn cobs and place in a large bowl. Add green onions, parsley, basil, mint, walnuts, and fregola. Using your hands, tear Halloumi into bite-size pieces; add to bowl and toss to combine. Add lemon juice, vinegar, and remaining ¼ cup oil. Toss to mix thoroughly and season with salt, pepper, and more lemon, if desired.