This low carb grilled halloumi makes a great side dish for your next cookout. Plus some great ideas for hosting the perfect backyard get together.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year. No, I am not talking about Christmas, I’m talking about grilling season. The weather is warming up, Memorial Day is just around the corner and it’s time to invite a few friends over, and fired up that grill that’s been hiding all winter long. I swear it almost doesn’t matter what you put on it, it’s bound to come out tasting like summer…that charcoal grilled taste brings out the best flavours in everything from veggies to meats to cake. Yup, I said cake. Grilled pound cake is delicious!
Since we put some serious effort into our backyard this year, I’ve been chomping at the bit to host a backyard bbq. So this Memorial Day, we are hosting quite a number of friends and neighbours. The guest list grew rather quickly so I suspect we may have to borrow an extra grill or two to feed all the hungry tummies. We will be burning the charcoal at both ends, quite literally. I know it will be chaos but I also know it will be a total blast! Let’s just hope the Portland weather cooperates.
My best tips on hosting a big cookout:
– Be sure to stock up on supplies early. Don’t be that person who has to run out in the middle of the party to get more charcoal (or plates, or drinks, or ice, or whatever!). I have several bags of Kingsford Match Light in our shed, at the ready for party time. Because it lights so quickly with one match, we can get our food cooking in 10 minutes easily.
– Let your guests bring their favourite side dishes and drinks while you supply the main course. It takes a lot of stress off your hands and keeps your preparations simple and straightforward.
– Be considerate of people who might have special dietary needs, whether they are gluten intolerant, vegetarian, or low carb. As someone who is on a specialized diet, I can tell you it’s always appreciated. Encourage them to bring a special dish and make sure you have a few options that fit everyone’s needs.
– There is no such thing as too much food and the leftovers can feed your family for the next few days. I keep Glad Press’n Seal around to wrap up things up right on the plate or serving dish so I don’t have to transfer them to another container (less washing up!). I find it far more useful than cling wrap, since it will stick to any surface, including plastic, wood, and even paper. It also clings to itself so you can make custom-szed bags for funny little leftover bits.
– Keep it simple by doing one-stop shopping wherever possible. Walmart has everything you need for hosting the perfect backyard bbq this grilling season. Grills, charcoal, plates, cups, ingredients, and storage for the yummy leftovers.
– Dessert IS required at my cookouts. I always make something fun and easy for the kids, and something a little more sophisticated for the adults. Guests can bring these too, of course!
And now for a delicious side dish that fits my dietary needs but that everyone will love. If you’ve never tried Halloumi grilling cheese (yes, cheese you can put right on the grill), you’re in for a treat.
- 2 medium tomatoes chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 7- ounce packages Halloumi cheese (Cyprus grilling cheese)
In a large, combine tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and refrigerate (the flavours meld together well, so you can make this a few hours ahead).
Cut each piece of halloumi once crosswise and then cut into even 1/2 inch to 1/2-inch thin slices. You will get about 12 slices of cheese. Grill over medium heat until grill marks appear on the cheese, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. You will need to loosen the cheese with a metal spatula to turn.
Transfer to a serving platter and top with tomato basil mixture.
Serves 12. Each serving has 0.7 g NET CARBS.
Food energy: 134kcal
Total fat: 11.24g
Calories from fat: 101
Total dietary fiber: 0.26g
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kingsford Charcoal and Glad . The opinions and text are all mine.