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Garden Salad with Lentils, Herb Salsa, Halloumi, Roquefort & Sugared Pecans

5 May 2024

This is such a great salad to make ahead of time. All the elements can be prepared the day before or the same day and when you’re ready to eat all you need to do is pan fry the halloumi and throw all the ingredients together. This is also a super versatile dish, like any salad actually, mix it up with different kinds of nuts, use spinach instead of salad, use brie in stead of roquefort, whatever rocks your boat! (I also still had some kale flowers left which I used as garnish and extra flavour). 

Garden Salad with Herb Salsa, Halloumi & Sugared Pecans

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Dinner, lunch
By Saffron Serves: 2-3
Prep Time: 10 Cooking Time: 20 minutes + make ahead time Total Time: 30 minutes


  • Nuts:
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 handful nuts of choice
  • Herb salsa:
  • 2 - 3 kinds of leafy green herbs (a handful of each). I used dille, parsley and koriander
  • 1 - 2 tbsp vinegar of choice
  • 1 - 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Pinch chili flakes
  • 1 - 2 tsp honey or sugar
  • Pepper & Salt
  • Rest of the ingredients:
  • 1 can of lentils, or cook 150 g dried lentils for ± 30 minutes in salted water
  • Lettuce of choice, I used a mix of rucola, mustard seeds and oak leaf lettuce
  • Handul cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Olive oil
  • Pepper & Salt
  • (I also still had some kale flowers left which I used as garnish)
  • ± 100 g Roquefort, crumbled
  • 1 halloumi piece, cut into 0.5 cm slices


Nuts (5 minutes, make ahead):


Heat a heavy based pan and sprinkle in the sugar, when it just starts to caramelise add the nuts and continue to stir with a wooden spatula spoon so all the sugar coats the nuts. I like to have a few crunchy sugar granules sticking to the nuts, so don’t caramelise too long.


Pour into a plate lined with baking paper and spread it out. Let it cool before roughly chopping. Once completely cooled store in an airtight container.

Herb salsa (5 minutes, make ahead):


Add all the ingredients into a blender, only add half of the vinegar, olive oil and sugar for now. Blend into a smooth paste, add a drop of cold water if you need to help it along.


Taste and adjust the seasoning with any of the ingredients.

Finishing of the dish:


Is using dried lentils, rinse them and boil in salted water for ±35 minutes until al dente, no need to soak them in advance. Drain and let cool.


Roughly chop the salad leaves and squeeze in the juice of half a lemon, add some olive oil, pepper and salt, and mix well to coat. Mix through the cooled lentils and the cherry tomatoes and set aside.


Heat a frying pan and add some olive oil. Lay the halloumi in the pan and fry on both sides until nice and browned.


Now all you need to do is plate: Start with the lentil and lettuce mix, then the cheeses and nuts and the dollops of herb salsa. Enjoy!

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