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Grilled Halloumi and Fig Salad With Balsamic

Grilled Halloumi and Fig Salad With Balsamic

Photo by Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post

This is a unique and flavorful summer salad that would be an ideal accompaniment for just about any barbecue sauce-slathered grilled protein.

You can cook the fruit and cheese on an outdoor grill as well. The balsamic vinegar you use here should be an aged, thick, sweet-tart one.


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 fresh figs, stemmed and halved lengthwise
Two 1/4-inch thick slabs halloumi cheese (3 ounces total), patted dry
3 teaspoons aged balsamic vinegar (see headnote)
2 packed cups baby arugula
1 cup thinly sliced fresh fennel (from 1 medium bulb)
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup walnut pieces, toasted (see NOTE)
Freshly ground black pepper

Use a tablespoon of the oil to brush both sides of the figs and the slabs of cheese, then use 1 teaspoon of the balsamic vinegar to brush all the figs.

Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Add the cheese and figs; cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side until the fruit is caramelized and tender and the cheese is warmed and grill marks have formed.

Transfer the cheese to a cutting board; cut each slab into 4 triangular pieces, so you have 8 pieces total.

Toss the arugula and fennel in a medium bowl with the remaining tablespoon of oil and the salt.

To serve, divide the greens among individual salad plates. Top each with 2 fig halves, 2 cheese triangles and some walnuts. Drizzle each salad with a 1/2 teaspoon of the remaining balsamic vinegar, then sprinkle each lightly with pepper.

NOTE: Toast the walnuts in a small, dry skillet over medium-low heat, until fragrant and lightly browned, shaking the pan as needed to prevent scorching. Cool completely before using.

Makes 4 servings

Per serving: Calories 230; Total Fat 18g (Saturated Fat 5g); Cholesterol 15mg; Sodium 270mg; Total Carbohydrates 13g; Dietary Fiber 3g; Protein 7g; Sugars 10g


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