Roasted aubergine and red pepper couscous with halloumi cheese recipe

This is fairly quick to knock up and makes enough for 4 portions, it’s also easy to make vegan by replacing the halloumi cheese with sliced tofu.

Ingredients – Makes 4 portions

220g uncooked couscous

Olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

1 vegetable stock cube (I use a Knorr stock pot)

330ml boiling water

1 large or 2 medium red onions

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 large aubergine

2 sweet red peppers

1 250g block of halloumi or 1 block of tofu

1 can of cooked green lentils (Lentilles Vertes)

A drop of truffle oil – Optional

Method

Right, heat your oven to 200C, I’ve got a fan oven.

De-seed your peppers, chop them into pieces, make them however big you want.

Chop the aubergine into slices and then into pieces, again, any size you want but bear in mind you want all this to roast fairly quickly.

Throw the pepper and aubergine on baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, add a twist of black pepper and mix it all together.

Put that in the oven to roast and grab the onion(s).

Peel and chop the onions, put them in a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil and a twist of black pepper, cook over a medium heat until they’re turning soft and almost translucent. Add the minced garlic and cook for a few more minutes but don’t over cook the garlic.

Once the veg has been roasting in the oven for 10 minutes take it out, give it a shake and a turn and put it back in the oven for 10 minutes.

Slice the halloumi cheese into 8 slices, add a little olive oil to a frying pan and get it on a medium heat. Add the slices of halloumi and cook until golden brown, keep an eye on them, they can brown quickly. When both sides are done remove from the pan and set aside.

Your roast veg should have had about 20 minutes now, check to see if it’s done, I like it slightly crispy and almost burnt, each to their own. If it’s done, turn the oven off and get started on the cous cous.

Dissolve the stock pot in 330ml of boiling water, add the couscous to the pan with the onions and garlic and place on a very low heat. Add the stock to the pan, stir to cover the couscous and put a lid on the pan.

After 2-3 minutes give the couscous a stir, it should have swollen up and taken on all the water, if it hasn’t, put the lid back on and give it another minute but keep checking.

Once it’s done, drain the lentils and add them to the pan along with the roasted veg and halloumi cheese.

Add the totally optional drop of truffle oil and give it all a good stir, I know it sounds really pretentious but I think it really makes a difference. If you’ve not got truffle oil and you’re tempted to get some make sure it’s a good quality oil with some real truffle, I’ve got some of the Truffle Hunter oils.

Roasted butternut squash with spicy lentils

This recipe makes a lot of the lentils, you could add more squash or keep the leftovers and do something else with them, I had mine for lunch the next day! It could also be very easily made vegan by not using the butter!

Roasted butternut squash with spicy lentils

Ingredients

Olive oil

A little butter

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 cloves of garlic, crushed through a press

1 large onion, diced

1 ½ tablespoons of curry powder (mild, hot, whatever you like) or garam masala

1 litre of vegetable stock

1 ½ cups of dried red split lentils, rinsed and drained

1 can of chopped tomatoes

1 large butternut squash

Method

Heat the oven to 180C (I’ve got a fan oven).

Peel and quarter the butternut squash.

Place in a baking dish and drizzle over a little olive oil.

Dot a little butter on the squash pieces and season with salt and pepper.

Roast in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour or until the squash is tender and has turned brown in places.

Whilst the squash is in the oven add a little olive oil to a pan and add the onion.

Sauté the onion for a few minutes over a medium heat and add the garlic.

Cook for a few minutes more and add the curry powder, stir to combine and add half of the vegetable stock.

Add the lentils, stir and cover.

Keep checking to make sure the lentils haven’t taken on all of the stock, top up with some of the left over stock if needed.

When the lentils are almost cooked add the chopped tomatoes and stir to combine it all.

Your squash should be done by now! You did keep checking on it didn’t you?

Transfer the squash to some bowls and spoon over the lovely hot spicy lentil mix.

Enjoy!