Welcome to Praise Seitan! Food, Drink & Travel From the Heart of Seattle. It's a food, beverage and travel blog that combines recipes and globetrotting tales with personal stories about my journey of healing and self-discovery.

I hope you enjoy my fun, flavorful and healthy vegetarian recipes. Enjoy, and all hail our vegetable overlords!

To learn about my freelance writing and editing services, visit my business website.

Too-Much-Party-Food Middle Eastern Salad With Grilled Halloumi

Too-Much-Party-Food Middle Eastern Salad With Grilled Halloumi

Last weekend, I helped prepare food for my best friend's birthday party. It was an epic cooking extravaganza at my apartment. I made three kinds of finger sandwiches:

  • Thinly sliced cucumber and softened goat cheese on buttermilk sandwich bread
  • Sliced fig, olive tapenade and goat cheese on brioche sandwich bread
  • Roasted turkey, sliced Fuji apple and cheddar cheese on buttermilk sandwich bread (for the meaties)

I also made a massive batch of Ina Garten's coconut cake in cupcake form.

Because I'm crazy, I also decided to quick-pickle some shallots I had on hand along with some spring onions from our patio garden and a sprinkle of sumac.

The party was a huge success and a wonderful time was had by all. There was bountiful food and drink, a warm fire to huddle by in the chill of the Seattle late-summer evening, champagne toasts to loved ones and lots of laughter. Best of all, my friend felt loved and appreciated.

The next day, I found myself with an abundance of cucumbers I had over-zealously sliced for the finger sandwiches. What's a girl to do with too many cucumbers? Make a Middle Eastern-inspired grain salad with grilled halloumi and a dukkah blend from World Spice Merchant that I've been waiting to try, of course.  


I grabbed some delightful black radishes, rainbow-colored bell peppers, sunny yellow zucchini, bright heirloom carrots and my favorite spicy salad mix from my local Sunday farmer's market to complete my new creation. I roasted the more substantial veggies and thinly sliced the radishes to compliment the cucumbers, pan-fried the halloumi and sprinkled the whole mess with the dukkah. I still had a fair amount of cucumbers on hand afterwards... but this dinner sure was fun to create, and it tasted amazing! 

Too-Much-Party-Food Middle Eastern Salad With Grilled Halloumi

1 small brick (about 8 oz) halloumi, sliced into ½” rectangles
1 bell pepper, cut lengthwise into thin strips
1 medium yellow (or green) zucchini, cut in half widthwise, then cut lengthwise into thin strips
3-4 carrots, cut lengthwise into thin strips
1 cucumber, sliced paper-thin
2 medium radishes, sliced or chopped thin
ΒΌ lb salad mix (I used a spicy salad blend that included arugula and mustard greens)
1 cup cooked bulghur wheat
2 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp mixture of chopped parsley and mint
Salt and pepper, to taste
Dukkah, to taste (I used the hazelnut dukkah blend from World Spice Merchant)

For the roasted veggies:
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp maple syrup
Salt and pepper, to taste

carrots zucchini and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400. Meanwhile, cook your bulghur and chop your halloumi, herbs and all your veggies. When the oven is heated, toss the carrots, zucchini and bell pepper in the olive oil and syrup, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast for 20 minutes, or until tender and starting to crisp a little at the edges. 

fried halloumi

While the veggies are roasting, heat a skillet over medium-high. When hot, pan-fry the halloumi until lovely and brown on both sides (about 5-7 minutes, but keep a close eye; it can go from golden brown to burned in a flash). 

salad and herbs

When the bulghur is cooked, veggies are roasted and halloumi is fried, assemble the salad. Layer the bulghur at the bottom, the salad greens on top of that, top with the cucumber and radishes, sprinkle on about half of the chopped herbs, add the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and toss to combine. Add 1-2 tbsp of dukkah and toss once more.

Divide into bowls and top with the roasted veggies, halloumi, the rest of the herbs and another Β½ - 1 tbsp of dukkah. Enjoy this fresh, healthy and flavorful meal! Serves 2 very generously or 3 more modestly.

middle eastern salad dukkah halloumi roasted vegetables
middle eastern halloumi dukkah salad
Two Dishes From Bryant Terry's "Afro-Vegan"

Two Dishes From Bryant Terry's "Afro-Vegan"

Summer Pasta With Raw Tomato-Herb Sauce

Summer Pasta With Raw Tomato-Herb Sauce