Halloumi is a cheese that originates in Cyprus. It is a very unusual cheese in that it requires no acid or culture to curdle the milk. It has a high melting point so can be grilled or fried and keep its shape. This makes it a great alternative to meat when served with salad or stir-fried vegetables. Or you can serve it on toasted crusty bread.
I bought a Mad Millie Cheese Making Kit and have been making my way through the different types of cheeses. I am continually amazed by the wide range of different types of cheese you can make with the same starting ingredients. Mad Millie also have videos to show you how to make the different cheeses.
You will need:
2 ml calcium chloride
2 tablets of rennet diluted in 1/4 cup water
As with all cheese making, sterilise all your equipment first.
Using a pot on the stove, bring the milk to a temperature of 45C. Add calcium chloride and rennet and stir thoroughly. Leave to set at 45C for 45 minutes. Place the pot in the sink and surround with warm water to maintain the temperature.
After 45 minutes the curd should be set. Cut into 1cm cubes and then gently stir for a further 10 minutes until curds are significantly smaller and slightly springy. Scoop the curds into a cheese cloth lined colander to drain. Cover the curds with the cheese cloth and press with a weight (such as a large bowl of water) on top. Press until the curd is firm and slightly rubbery in texture (about 30 mins), then cut into desired size blocks.
In a large pot bring some water to boiling point. Place blocks of halloumi into the boiling water. The curd will sink to the bottom. After 5-10 minutes they are cooked and will come to the surface. Scoop them out and transfer to a cooling rack.
Sprinkle salt all over the cheese and leave until cold. When cool, wrap in cling film and store in the fridge. Eat within 2 weeks. You can freeze them.
To serve: gently grill or fry each side until slightly soft and golden. You can squash them down to flatten out the pieces.