Something magical happens when you grill stone fruit. The fruit's firm texture turns silky, supple and almost jammy. And, the natural sugars begin to caramelize, concentrating their inherent sweetness. While we love grilled fruit for dessert, it also makes a stunning addition to savory dishes.
Here, the juicy, jamminess of the fruit is the perfect foil for salty, melty Halloumi (a semi-hard, brined cheese from Cyprus). A vibrant, punchy herb chutney bolstered with Yandilla Mustard Seed Oil brightens the whole dish adding a wasabi-like heat that plays beautifully with both the cheese and the fruit.
Cook's note: we used plums and peacotums (peach/apricot/plum hybrid) for this recipe, but any stone fruit would work here. The trick is picking stone fruit that is a little underripe, so it doesn't fall apart when grilling.
Recipe, food styling and photography by Asha Loupy
Preheat gas grill to medium high heat, or prepare a charcoal grill.
While the grill is heating, make the herb chutney. Combine the chopped cilantro, mint, jalapeño, mustard seed oil, lime juice, half teaspoon of salt and cumin seeds in a blender. Blend until smooth, adding a tablespoon of water if the mixture is too thick (you're looking for a silky, pourable texture). Set aside until ready to serve.
To prepare the fruit and cheese, brush with a thin layer of olive oil and sprinkle the stone fruit with the remaining half teaspoon of salt (the halloumi is salty on its own, so no salt is needed on the cheese).
Oil the grill and let heat for a few minutes so that grate is hot. Place the stone fruit on the grill, cut side down, and grill until the fruit is just starting to cook through, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and continue to cook until the fruit begins to slump a little and juices start to pool where the pit was, about another 1-2 minutes. Remove from the grill and transfer to a baking sheet, cut side up, so the juices remain intact.
Brush the grate with oil once more and place the halloumi on the grill, grilling until soft and melty, about 2-3 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove the cheese from the grill and place it on the sheet pan with the grilled fruit.
To assemble the dish, pour the chutney onto a serving platter and spread into a thin, even layer. Arrange the grilled halloumi slices and fruit on top of the chutney. Garnish with a few sprigs of cilantro and mint leaves, and finish with a sprinkling of flaky salt over the fruit.