The Cottage Smallholder

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Yummy lamb steak recipe: lamb, halloumi, couscous and summery salad served in warm pitta/pita envelopes

Lamb filled pitta bread with haloumi and summery salads

Lamb filled pitta bread with haloumi and summery salads

Sometimes I get sick and tired of conventional meat and two veg sit down suppers. I want something that I can pick up in one hand and eat beside the pond or balance a plate on the arm of the sofa and guzzle whilst I watch a bit of TV. I know that there’s a big move to get people to sit down at a table and eat together so I’m bucking the system a bit here. What I’m saying is that as Danny and I always sit down to eat together – sometimes it’s good to have a meal that just needs a fork simply our hands to eat. This sort of meal is a rare treat for us.

We have a stack of books and magazines in our loo. In May this recipe was featured in one of The Telegraph’s magazine supplements.
“If only Danny liked this sort of food.” I inwardly whined to myself. The recipe had my mouth watering every time that I looked at it. I left the recipe page open on top of the pile to see if Danny would come bursting out of the bathroom insisting that we run up our own version immediately.

It didn’t happen.

Eventually I mentioned the fact that I’d found a couple of organic lamb steaks in the freezer. I’ve always loved Greek Souvlaki rather than kofte served in pitta bread so these steaks would be perfect.
“Would you do me an enormous favour and try some kebabs for supper tonight? I know that they’re girly food but..”
“Well they certainly are not girly food. Kebabs are perfect after pub nosh. Man Food. I saw that recipe and I’d like to try them.”
Oh, assumptions have so often been my downfall.

I took the elements from the recipe that appealed to me, flash frying the lamb steaks for 1 minute each side and letting them rest for a good five minutes before slicing them up. I made a simple cubed cucumber, fresh mint and Greek yoghurt salad. I also quickly ran up a raw onion and tomato salad with an olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing – the latter would soak into the couscous that I spooned into the base of each pitta/pita bread envelope. I didn’t fry the halloumi cheese, just sliced it ultra thin and let it share the top layer with the meat and the green salad leaves.

I added a finely sliced red pickled Jalapeno pepper, just to mine, as Danny hates these.

We grazed in contented silence, side by side on the sofa. They were delicious, summery, very filling and fast. Danny loved them so maybe this is the start of my great big pitta adventure.



Yummy lamb steak recipe: lamb, halloumi, couscous and summery salad served in warm pitta/pita envelopes
Recipe Type: Main
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Total time: 20 mins
Serves: 2
These are surprisingly filling and a great way of stretching a little meat a long way.
  • 2 lamb steaks (approx. 270g/9.5 ounces) Our steaks were quite thin just 1cm/half an inch
  • 4 white pittas/pitas
  • 100g/3.5 ounces of dried couscous
  • 125m/ just under 5 fluid ounces of hot vegetable stock – I used a quarter of a teaspoon of vegetable stock powder + a hazelnut sized knob of butter
  • 4 medium tomatoes
  • 1 small onion – skinned, halved and sliced fine
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
  • A large pinch of salt
  • 2 large handfuls of salad leaves
  • 20 very thin slices of halloumi cheese
  • 150ml/5 fluid ounces of Greek style yoghurt
  • A quarter of a cucumber cut lengthwise into chunky strips and then cut crosswise into short lengths
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic granules/1 chunky cube of garlic – squished, skinned and sliced as fine as possible
  • Ground white pepper
  • 1 pickled Jalapeno pepper – optional
  1. Tomato and onion salad. Put the onion and tomatoes in a bowl and pour over the olive oil, pinch of salt and balsamic vinegar toss well to mix in the dressing.
  2. Make the couscous. Put the vegetable stock and the butter into a small saucepan. Bring to the boil and add the couscous. Stir, remove from the heat and put a lid on the saucepan. In about 3 minute the stock will have been absorbed. Fluff up the couscous with a fork just before serving.
  3. Make the cucumber and mint salad: In a small bowl add the cucumber, yoghurt, garlic granules and freshly chopped mint and stir well. Add a dash of ground white pepper to taste and set aside.
  4. On a small plate put a large dash of olive oil and a small pinch of salt. Add ground black pepper to taste. Press each side of both lamb steaks into this olive oil mix and heat up your frying pan (medium heat) until it is hot and a drip of water sizzles and jumps on the surface. Fry the steaks for one minute each side and let them rest for five minutes in a warm place.
  5. Meanwhile wash and drain the salad leaves.
  6. Cut a strip from one side of each piece pitta bread and warm them, along with your plates gently under a low grill/broiler.
  7. When the lamb steaks have rested slice them into bite sizes chunks and make up your pitta envelopes. Put two tablespoonfuls of couscous in the base of each, followed by the tomato and onion salad and dressing, then the cucumber and yoghurt salad. Finally the slices of halloumi cheese, lamb and green salad leaves and optional Jalapeno. Garnish with the remaining tomato and cucumber salads and serve on warm plates with napkins.

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  1. Nicola Beaumont

    Tried this receipe last night, loved it!!! Thanks for the info!!

  2. This sounds delicious. Always looking out for recipes that I can sustitute the meat for quorn as I am veggie and the rest of my family are meat eaters, so we can all have the same meal. I love halloumi cheese (squeaky cheese as we all call it) I laughed to myself as I read the recipe.. sounds like making an alternative knickerbocker glory!

  3. Liza Thomas

    That looks scrumptious! Love your photographs!
    When I click on the photo, it opens on another page, but it is still the same size. Would be great if clicking on the picture makes it enlarge, so that we can see some more of the great detail in the photograph. Or would that take too much bandwidth?

  4. Kooky Girl

    That is TOTALLY my kind of food. I made something similar tonight, similar in idea rather than ingredients ‘Quick Chicken Paella’ a recipe from the Waitrose magazine/newsletter that I picked up at the weekend. I had the chicken, the red pepper, the rice, the stock, the saffron. Perfect. I chucked in some green beans and peas. Half way through BB said, ‘This isn’t bad considering I don’t like paella’. Oops! I had totally forgotten about that..but it was delicious and made a change from our staple of baked pots and salad with chicken..

    Just one other item to mention Fiona, I had read an old post of yours that said you had give up TV watching.. So, what gives ?? :o)

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