I love roasting vegetables for their simplicity and versatility. Almost any vegetable can be roasted, although cauliflower is probably my favorite because roasting turns this otherwise strong smelling vegetable sweet and almost addictive. In fact, this simple method of preparing cauliflower transformed my oldest son into a cauliflower lover. As a cruciferous vegetable (in the same family as broccoli, brussels sprouts and cabbage), cauliflower contains phytochemicals that help fight and prevent cancer. You can read all about this in a previous post on cruciferous vegetables.
Today’s recipe for Roasted Cauliflower, Carrots and Chickpeas with Halloumi Cheese is based on a recipe I spotted in Michael Moore’s Blood Sugar The Family Cookbook, Everyday recipes for any family facing the challenge of diabetes and maintaining good health. You might recall that I attended an Australian lunch a few weeks back at his restaurant, The Sunburnt Calf, in New York.
I had picked up a piece of halloumi cheese from the local Greek market and hadn’t decided what to make with it. After watching a cooking demo on a Google Plus Hangout, I learned the proper way to cook halloumi – simply grill it for one minute per side. If you overcook it, halloumi cheese becomes rubbery. If you’ve never tried halloumi cheese, it has a salty sensation to it and squeaks against your teeth when you eat it – quite a unique eating experience. It doesn’t melt like most cheeses, just softens, making it perfect for grilling.
The addition of protein, fiber and iron rich chickpeas to this dish makes it a perfect meatless meal – when roasted as I did, some pieces come out chewy, others crunchy, for some fun textures in this dish.
So, imagine this taste sensation…sweet tender cauliflower, salty firm (and a bit squeaky) Halloumi, and chewy crunchy chickpeas. It’s so good.
This week, something roasted is the feature for Food Network’s Sensational Sides event. Please check out what all my fellow foodies made:
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Roasted Cauliflower, Carrots and Chickpeas With Halloumi Cheese
Dishin & Dishes: Roasted Asparagus and Avocado Toast
Cooking With Elise: Roasted Strawberries and a Mixed Green Salad
The Cultural Dish: Roasted Sweet Potatoes: Two Variations
Weelicious: Roast Chicken With Caramelized Lemons, Cherry Tomatoes and Olives
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Roasted Leeks With Polenta and Pork Tenderloin
Red or Green?: Spicy Roasted Radishes and Asparagus With Balsamic Vinegar
Virtually Homemade: Grilled Rosemary Garlic Potatoes
The Sensitive Epicure: Roasted Fingerling Potatoes and Asparagus With Rosemary
Feed Me Phoebe: Artichokes With White Wine and Thyme
Devour: Oven Roasted Vegetable Recipes
FN Dish: An Ode to the Oven, Roasted Side Dish Recipes
- 2 cups cauliflower florets, cut into small pieces
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into ¼" slices
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed, drained
- 3 shallots, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- ground sumac, optional
- 1 piece halloumi cheese, cut into ¼" slices
- 1 garlic clove, cut in half
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- red pepper flakes
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- In a large bowl, combine cauliflower, carrots and shallots. Drizzle olive oil on top and season with salt and pepper; toss well. Transfer to parchment paper lined baking sheet, making sure vegetables are spread in a single layer. Roast 15-20 minutes until vegetables are tender and brown (roasting time will depend on the size of your vegetables). Remove from oven and sprinkle lightly with ground sumac.
- While vegetables are roasting, prepare Grilled Halloumi Cheese. Gently rub halloumi slices with cut side of garlic clove. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with some red pepper flakes. Grill on a panini grill, stovetop grill or outdoor grill (you can also cook in a cast iron pan on the stove), about 1 minute per side until cheese is just soft. Do not overcook or it will become rubbery.
- Place a few pieces of Grilled Halloumi Cheese on each serving plate. Top with Roasted Cauliflower, Carrots and Chickpeas.