Silverbeet & Halloumi Pockets

With my lazy gardener traits, I have an appreciation for pick-and-come-again greens. Lettuce, rocket, spinach, herbs and the queen of all, silverbeet. Seedlings planted once provide many months of fresh produce. Even better, when they self-germinate around the garden from last season’s plants gone to seed.

If you are not a big fan of silverbeet, when you grow it you soon learn to be one. It is a consistent producer of vibrant leafy greens. A steady contender through the cooler months, and with more bulk once cooked than spinach it is my preferred choice for meals where I want leafy greens to be the hero.

With the drop in temperature this week I notice a real change in the air. The lingering summer-like days feel like they have well and truly finished as we cross the threshold of the autumn equinox. I like this time of year, it has a comforting feel to it, fresh while not quite as severe as the cold bite of winter. 

Meals are definitely leaning towards more warming dishes; soups, light stews, denser grains and roast vegetables are featured often. These warm vegetable-stuffed pockets are just the type of food that we feel like eating. I suggest making a double batch for reheating the next day for lunch, or freezing for another day – you will be mighty happy you made the extra effort.

Happy autumn equinox to you all. Snuggle in and make the most of the shorter days, a time to regroup and recharge after the intensity of summer and the busy harvest months. 

More Greens recipes on Homegrown Kitchen

Silverbeet & Halloumi Pockets

Inspired by the popular Turkish street food gözleme, in this variation of these grilled bread pockets I skip the yeast and use a simple yoghurt dough that is a little less “bready” and all about the filling. They can be stuffed with all manner of deliciousness, such as roasted pumpkin, pine nuts and feta; leftover vegetable curry; or cheese, grated carrot and chutney. Here I have combined my favourite garden greens, herbs and halloumi. If you haven’t got halloumi use feta or a mixture of grated cheese and parmesan.
Servings 8 pockets
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

Yoghurt dough

  • 2 cups (300g) plain flour (or use a combination of white and wholemeal flours)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup (180ml) natural yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp milk

Silverbeet & halloumi filling

  • 1 tbsp olive oil plus extra for cooking
  • ½ brown onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano or mint
  • Pinch of chilli flakes (optional)
  • 400 g bunch of silverbeet (see recipe for preparation)
  • 200 g packet halloumi, grated

Yoghurt Sauce

  • About ⅓ cup (80ml) natural yoghurt
  • 1 garlic clove, finely grated or chopped
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • Salt to season
  • Pinch of dried oregano/mint and chilli flakes

Instructions

  • Prepare the yoghurt dough so it can rest while making the filling. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Make a well and add the yoghurt and olive oil. Use a fork to whisk the yoghurt and oil together while gradually mixing in the flour into a “scruffy” dough. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough comes together.
  • Tip onto a lightly floured bench and knead for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Invert the mixing bowl over the dough and leave to rest.
  • Make the filling. Warm the olive oil in a heavy-based frying pan over a moderate heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, cumin, herbs and chilli, cook for a further minute until fragrant.
  • Meanwhile, wash the silverbeet leaves, shaking off the excess moisture. Finely chop the stalks and add them to the onion mixture, sautéing to soften.
  • Chop the leaves and add them to the pan, don’t mix. Cover with a lid for 5 minutes. The droplets of water remaining on the washed leaves will create steam to wilt the silverbeet. Remove the lid, turn up the heat and sauté until excess moisture has evaporated. Tip onto a plate to cool down.
  • Divide the dough into eight and roll each into a ball. Cover again with the bowl.
  • Grate the halloumi and add to the silverbeet mixture.
  • On a lightly-floured bench roll out one dough ball at a time into a round, about 15cm wide. Spoon 3 heaped tablespoons of the silverbeet mixture onto one half of the dough, then fold over the other half to create a crescent shape, pressing to seal. Repeat with the remaining filling and dough, cooking the pockets as you go.
  • Wash out the frying pan used for the silverbeet and reheat. Add a slick of oil and cook 2 pockets at a time - with a rotation of rolling, filling and cooking. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden - adjust the heat as needed so they don’t burn but keep it hot enough to cook the dough. Add a slick of oil to the pan as needed.
  • Combine the yoghurt sauce ingredients in a bowl, seasoning to taste.
  • The pockets are best eaten while warm served with the yoghurt sauce for dipping. They can also be cooled on a rack then reheated in a pan for a quick lunch.

Notes

To freeze the pockets, cook until lightly golden. Cool on a rack then freeze. Defrost pockets as needed, heating in a hot pan until golden. 
+ Cook in the oven
These pockets can also be cooked in the oven (thanks for this feedback from a lovely reader) at 190C for about 20 minutes until golden. They won't have the crispy exterior that I like about frying on the stovetop but it does save hands-on cooking time. Always good to have options! 

Join the Conversation

  1. Hi Nicola
    Firstly just wanted to say, I am absolutely loving your new cookbook. It feels like scarcely a day goes by that one of your books isn’t on my recipe book stand- thank you for all the joy, health and waste-free go-tos!
    Secondly, these look delicious! Do they work with any gf or spelt flours at all? If so, which is best?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Lesley, thank you so much for this lovely feedback. I am so happy you are finding joy in cooking from my books 🙂
      Yes, spelt flour works really well for these pockets. I used it for the ones photographed. Gluten-free is a little tricker as it doesn’t hold together so well for rolling and cooking. Adding an egg and/or some psyllium powder (1-2 teaspoons) to the dough would help here. Although I haven’t tried making these gluten-free (yet) so can’t be sure of the quantities.
      Happy cooking 🙂
      Nicola

  2. These are delicious! I’ve now made the recipe as described and a variation with leftover roast chicken and sauteed peppers. I was wondering whether half of the dough could be frozen for use at a later time, if I run out of time to roll it all out and cook it?
    Thanks 🙂
    Julie

    1. Hi Julie, thanks for the checking. I think it could be frozen, although I haven’t tried this myself. It does keep well in the fridge for a few days.
      Happy cooking 🙂
      Nicola

  3. Hi, can you make dough in advance and, if so, where should it be kept to rest. Hoping to make dough at midday for tonight’s dinner.
    Cheers

    1. Hi Emma, you can make the dough in advance. If it is only a few hours then leave it at room temp. It it will be 2+ hours then put the dough into the fridge until ready to use it.
      Enjoy, Nicola

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