Sesame halloumi parcels with sweet potato tahini mash & chopped herb salad

Use filo pastry to wrap salty Cypriot cheese with chilli, lemon and parsley, then serve with vibrant mash and an olive salad

  • Prep:40 mins
    Cook:20 mins
  • Serves 6
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 741
  • fat 53g
  • saturates 18g
  • carbs 40g
  • sugars 11g
  • fibre 7g
  • protein 25g
  • salt 2.9g


  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for brushing
  • 1 tbsp tahini paste
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • handful parsley, chopped
  • zest 1 lemon (use the juice in the salad)
  • 2 x 250g packs halloumi cheese, each cut into 12 slices
  • 6 sheets filo pastry
  • 50g sesame seeds
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 650g (about 4) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 tbsp tahini paste
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • juice 1 lemon
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • small bunch each mint, parsley and dill, all roughly chopped
  • handful cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ cucumber, seeds removed, chopped
  • small handful black olives, roughly chopped


  1. First make the halloumi parcels. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Grease 2 baking trays with oil. In a bowl, mix the tahini, olive oil, chilli, parsley and lemon zest. Add the halloumi and toss everything well to coat – don’t worry if the halloumi breaks up a little.

  2. Cut the filo sheets in half so that you have 12 squares – work with 2 at a time and keep the remaining pastry covered with a damp tea towel or cling film so it doesn’t dry out. Lightly brush the filo all over with a little oil, place 2 slices of halloumi at the top of each square, sprinkle with sesame seeds, then fold over the edges to enclose the halloumi. Brush again with oil and sprinkle with more seeds. Fold up into a square, brushing the final edge with egg to help seal the parcel. When all the parcels are made, place on the baking trays, brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle with more sesame seeds. Bake for 20 mins, swapping the trays over halfway through so that the parcels brown evenly.

  3. Meanwhile, make the mash. Put the sweet potato in a large pan of water, cover with a lid and boil for 10-12 mins until tender. Drain, reserving a little of the cooking water, and leave to steamdry. Tip the sweet potato into a food processor with the tahini, olive oil and plenty of seasoning. Whizz until smooth, adding enough of the cooking water to make a smooth purée. To make the salad, whisk together the lemon juice, honey and olive oil in a large bowl with some seasoning. Add the remaining ingredients and toss everything together.

  4. Spoon some of the sweet potato onto each plate. Add a pile of the herb salad and 2 halloumi parcels to each plate and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil.

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