x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Healthy recipe: tortilla wrap

When a sandwich would be too heavy and a salad simply unsatisfying, there's always the wrap.

A sandwich can often leave you feeling sleepy and bloated after lunch, but sometimes a salad just isn't enough to keep you going.

Tortilla wraps are a great solution at such times: they are filling without being heavy, lower in carbohydrates than a traditional loaf and also provide a dose of fibre if you choose wholemeal varieties. Wraps are also endlessly versatile. Try filling them with cream cheese, smoked salmon, a scattering of capers and finely grated lemon zest, mash avocado with lime juice and chopped chilli, spread over the base of the wrap and top with cooked prawns and slivers of fresh mango, or combine shredded chicken, pesto and raw spinach or blanched asparagus.

The recipe here is quick and simple to prepare and the crunchy vegetables provide a nice contrast to the creamy hummus and mild, slightly salty halloumi. As cheeses go, halloumi is lower in fat than most and is also high in both protein and calcium.

Hummus, meanwhile, is a great alternative to mayonnaise or butter and the bonus of making it from scratch is that you know it doesn't contain any hidden additives or preservatives. Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge and served with crudités as a healthy snack.

For the hummus

1 tin chickpeas, drained

2 tbsp tahini

garlic clove, peeled and chopped

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp lemon juice

salt and black pepper


For the wraps

cucumber, cut into matchsticks

10 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

red onion, peeled and very finely sliced

handful black olives, roughly chopped

2 tbsp lemon juice

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

handful mint leaves, chopped

125g halloumi cheese

2 wholemeal tortilla wraps

Tip all the ingredients for the hummus into a food processor and blend until fairly smooth, season with salt and black pepper and set aside.

Place the cucumber, cherry tomatoes, red onion and olives in a large bowl. Whisk together the lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, red chilli and mint. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and gently toss together.

Slice the halloumi into strips, then grill or fry in a dry pan for one to two minutes on each side, until golden.

Warm the wraps through, either in the microwave for 10 seconds or by dry frying them in a pan for one minute on each side.

Spread a layer of hummus over each wrap, leaving a boarder around the edges. Divide the vegetables between the two wraps and arrange the halloumi slices on top. Roll the wraps up tightly, before slicing in half and serving or wrapping in cling film and storing in the fridge.