One of the much-loved parts about living here in Arrowtown is the contrast between the seasons. Summer brings bright blue skies and my children playing in the river. The temperature drops a little and the yellowing of the leaves show us in dramatic fashion autumn has arrived. Shortly after this, snow appears on the mountains and the hats and mittens come out of storage in time for winter.

But along with all the romance of snow and glistening fires of Winter, is the FOOD!! I love winter food! It’s excuse to have warm dishes that fill the belly and makes my family feel loved.

Don’t feel put off by winter produce, Countdown has a fantastic range of fresh fruit and vegetables just waiting to be snapped up and turned into delicious meals. When I am choosing what to buy, I try to always pick produce that is in season, it means that not only is it the best quality, but the prices are great too!

The dish I am cooking today ‘Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad with Honey Mustard dressing and Haloumi’ is easy, nourishing and interesting! I have always loved roasting vegetables, a girlfriend and I always joked that I am the roaster and she is the stir fryer, at least we know our place haha. Where was I, ahhh yes, roasting vegetables. Take some care when you are cutting each vegetable to think about the best way to create some interest. For instance, if it is a carrot we want some pointy ends that go crispy and the flesh of the carrot in the middle to be soft and sweet. With the cauliflower I like there to be a flat surface on each floret so I cut them in half, this roasts up nicely.

Honey Mustard dressing is a classic flavour combo which is great to have in your arsenal and I’ll show you how easy it is too.

Serve the Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad with Honey Mustard dressing and Haloumi, as a main meal with a loaf of crusty bread, or as a side to roasted chicken or leg of lamb. It’s a winner with the whole family and looks impressive without slaving away in the kitchen.

If you try this do let me know what you think.

Happy Cooking xx Jana

Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad with Honey Mustard dressing and Haloumi

Ingredients

  • 1-2 Beauregard Kumara
  • 2 brown onions
  • 3 carrots
  • ½ head of broccoli
  • ½ head of cauliflower
  • 2 pears
  • Thyme
  • 1 Lemon
  • Oil for frying
  • 180 gram pack Countdown Haloumi – diced
  • Dressing
  • 1 teaspoon Honey warmed in the microwave if needed
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain Mustard
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Pinch Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon White vinegar

Instructions

  1. Peel & cut onions, kumara & carrot. Cut the onions into wedges, and the kumara and carrot try to get some lovely pointy bits so that you can get crispy ends and interest.
  2. Cut broccoli & Cauliflower into florets and each floret in half. I like there to be a flat surface on each piece and this area seems to roast up nicely.
  3. Leave skin on the pears, slice and take the core out
  4. Season well and coat veg in olive oil and roast in trays without overcrowding, this is key, if you crowd the pan the vegetables will steam not roast nicely.
  5. I used two roasting dishes, one with the onions, kumara & carrot and one with cauli, broccoli and pears.
  6. Use the thyme and lemon to add flavour, I did a generous amount of thyme on the kumara tray and the juice from the lemon on the cauliflower tray. Just be conscious that the lemon adds liquid, and we don’t want to boil/steam the veg. perhaps slightly less oil when using the lemon, but you’ll get a feel for it.
  7. While the vegetables are roasting, make the dressing
  8. To make the dressing, combine all ingredients in a jar with a lid. Shake and taste. Adjust seasoning if needed.
  9. During the cooking of the vegetables give them a shake and move them around with a fish slice/wooden spoon a couple of times. This is important too. We want the vegetables to be just right, not over cooked, but certainly not under done either. If something is cooking quicker that others feel free to take that item out.
  10. When the veg are done, take them out and move on to your haloumi.
  11. Fry your haloumi in oil over a medium heat until browned.
  12. While the haloumi is cooking put all the vegetables on your serving dish – then add the cubed haloumi when cooked. Think about getting some height and highlighting some of the interest in the vegetables that you have created. Pop a gorgeously roasted carrot up on its end, sneak the caramelised edges on the cauliflower out so they can be seen. SHOW OFF!
  13. Spoon over the dressing and scatter with more thyme (if you like it! Mine was gorgeous and fresh and fine to have in this applicatioand serve!