Thin, fluffy dough patties with tomato and cheese are simply divine, aren't they? And I'm not necessarily talking about Italian pizza (which I also adore). I'm talking about the Levantine manouche or manakish (plural). In Lebanon and the region, manakish with zata'ar or "kishk" are classically prepared and offered fresh on almost every corner. But of course, they can also be prepared in any colourful combination, such as this manakish with halloumi and fresh tomatoes.
Squeaky and fruity on the palm of your hand
Unlike pizza, you eat Manakish folded up and like to add a few herbs and/or more vegetables. A perfect little meal to-go! For the Lebanese, at least for me, a manouche is a piece of childhood and home - no matter where you are. Changing recipes is looked at very critically. If you're unlucky, a horde of Lebanese with bast brooms will follow you if you change the traditional manakish combinations. Joking aside. Sometimes, of course, you can have a little variety.
Preparing the manakish with halloumi and tomato is really easy. Either you make the yeast dough yourself, which is very quick - or if you are in a turbo hurry, you can of course use ready-made yeast dough.
As a big fan of halloumi, I decided to break away from the classic za'atar topping and instead put the deliciously squeaky cheese on the pita. To make the whole thing really juicy and fruity, I add slices of tomato. And to top it all off, I cover the tomatoes with fresh garlic slices, the aroma of which soaks into the tomatoes during baking. Then add a few black cumin seeds, bake in the oven for 3 1/2 minutes and your manakish with halloumi and tomato are ready.
A tip: After baking, top your manouche with fresh mint and fold it over. By the way, the manakish with halloumi and tomato also make a great savoury breakfast! Enjoy your meal!
Recipe for Manakish with halloumi and tomato
- 250 g Halloumi
- 1 Flesh tomato
- 3 Garlic cloves
- 3 TL Black cumin
- 6 Stem Mint
- Olive oil for drizzling
- Prepare the dough according to the recipe.
- Cut the halloumi into very thin slices.
- Cut the tomato into thin slices and halve.
- Peel the garlic cloves and cut into thin slices.
- Divide the dough into 8 balls.
- Preheat the oven with the pizza stone to 250 °C top and bottom heat.
- Roll out the balls into 1cm thick patties.
- Cover half of the patties with tomato and the other half with halloumi.
- Spread the garlic slices over the tomatoes.
- Bake the manakish in the oven for about 3:30 minutes and then drizzle with a little olive oil and garnish with fresh mint.
- Manakish are eaten folded up. But you can certainly also enjoy them like a pizza 😉