Yummy pasta tossed with pan-fried Halloumi cheese, roasted veggies, fresh rosemary, toasted ciabatta croutons, and cherry tomato mushroom sauce. Then topped off with a squeeze of fresh lemon, basil leaves, and parmesan cheese. Halloumi cheese is a semi-hard, unripened, brined cheese made from a mixture of goat and sheep milk, and has a high melting point allowing it to be sautéed long enough to develop a crispy exterior.
½ small loaf ciabatta bread, cut into small cubes
1 yellow pepper, cut into ½” pieces
1small red onion, sliced into thin wedges
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided plus extra
1 tablespoon of fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 lemon, zest and juice
16 ounces Campanelle pasta
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 package halloumi cheese
2 cups cherry tomatoes
1 clove of garlic, minced
½ cup thinly sliced mushrooms
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil
Parmesan cheese for topping
Preheat the oven to 400˚F. Slice the crusts off the ciabatta bread, then cut into ½” cubes and place into a large mixing bowl. Cut the pepper in half, remove the seeds, cut into ½” square pieces, and add to the bowl. Peel the onions and cut into thin wedges then place in the bowl.
Drizzle in 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and the chopped rosemary into a small bowl. Using a rasper grater, finely grate the lemon zest into the small bowl, add a large pinch of salt and whisk everything together. Pour the mixture over the bread and vegetables, tossing them well so everything is coated. Lightly coat a sheet tray with oil and pour the vegetable onto the sheet tray. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, tossing halfway through.
Prepare the pasta according to the package directions. While keeping one cup of the pasta water, drain the rest, and set the pasta aside.
While the pasta cooks, add the remaining olive oil to a pan set over medium heat. Add the red pepper flakes to the pan and sauté for 2 minutes until soft. Add the halloumi cheese and sauté for 2-3 minutes until golden on all sides. Remove and keep warm.
Add the cherry tomatoes to the pan and sauté until they pop. Add the garlic, mushrooms, and tomato paste with ½ cup of pasta water and cook until incorporated and a smooth sauce forms, about 3-5 minutes. Add the roasted vegetables with bread and any liquid in the pan to the tomato mixture. Cook until incorporated, add the pasta and the sautéed Halloumi cheese, then squeeze the fresh lemon over the pasta, stir in. If needed, thin the sauce with the remaining pasta water. Top with fresh basil, parmesan cheese, and serve.