Food loving, wine addicted film critic working 72hrs a day :) You can suss my film blog at www.saltypopcorn.com and my food one at www.sydneytable.com
Published September 9th 2011
It's been a long time coming but finally I have cooked something worthy of writing about. This dish is just sensational and is based on a joint recipe from Masterchef from last year where they made mystery boxes.
It is all about the prep and while the original recipe stated 20mins for prep was all you would need it took me closer to an hour. It packs some punch in flavours and while the original recipe said to use English spinach I went for silverbeet instead. Firstly, it is so much more affordable and secondly it has so much more flavour.
It is based on a Greek pasta bake which usually includes ground beef but the flavours of the silverbeet and haloumi far outweigh the need for meat.
Give yourself plenty of time for prepping prior to your guests arriving and then just do the baking when the guests arrive.
YOU WILL NEED:
* 2 x 180gm packs of haloumi
* 300g of sour cream
* 8 eggs
* 60ml of olive oil
* 1 big bunch of silverbeet (or two bunches of english spinach) - wash and trim these and get rid of the crunchy white part of the stalk - finely chopped
* 500gms rigatoni or short tubed pasta (next time I would like to make with small pasta elbows)
* 2 purple onions finely chopped
* 1 long red chilli (keep the seeds in) - finely chopped
* 2 heads of broccoli, stalks removed and roughly chopped
* chilli flakes or Piri Piri to serve on the table
YOU WILL NEED TO: 1) Finely grate the haloumi (and pray for strong wrists ) and reserve 1/4 of it for the topping. Divide the remaining haloumi between 2 large bowls, then add 4 eggs to each bowl. Whisk to commune and then season with some S&P
2) Heat 2tsp oil in a LGE frying pan over high heat. Add silverbeet to cook, tossing until wilted, then drain and set aside - reserve the pan for later usage
3) Cook pasta in a large pan of boiling heavily salted water for 5mins (the pasta will not be completely cooked), Drain and add to one of the bowls with egg/cheese mixture. Toss well to combine
4) Heat remaining 2.5TBSP oil in the reserved pan over medium heat. Add the onions and the chilli, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft. Add the spinach and broccoli and toss/ stir for about 4mins until the broccoli is bright green and nearly tender
5) Add the broccoli/ onion mixture to the remaining egg mixture and stir well to combine
6) Preheat an oven to about 190degrees (Celsius). Place half the pasta mixture on the bottom of a 25cm (7cm deep) square baking dish or similar. Try and arrange the pasta side by side and even. Then layer with the broccoli mixture, then top with the remaining pasta mixture. Scatter the top with the remaining haloumi.
7) Bake for 30mins and the top is nice and golden
8) Serve with some lemon cheeks and chilli flakes and serve with a nice shiraz