Haloumi Cheese – The Cheese for Grilling

We added another cookbook to the bookshelf this month and will detail our trials and errors over the next few months. Having recently returned from the Middle East region, we searched for a general book on the cuisine and found The Complete Middle East Cookbook. The book is broken up by region and has a good mix of text on the local food culture and plenty of recipes.

The Cheese for Frying and Grilling

Our family lived on the island of Cyprus for a short period of time when I was growing up so I immediately turned to that chapter for a look. The first recipe was for Haloumi cheese which is a favorite of this household and Cypriots. This goat milk based cheese is great for grilling as it won’t melt like many others. Just cut 1/4 to 1/2 inch slabs and fry it in a non-stick pan on a medium-low heat adding olive oil if you wish. Brown each side and serve warm with a drizzle of fresh lemon juice. The cheese is mildly salty and has some tang to it. You can also top it of with some spreads, herbs or vegetables. Thicker slabs can be put directly on a grill. If you like to cook kabobs, next time cut some Haloumi into cubes, put it on the skewer and grill it with the vegetables. We have found this cheese at Whole Foods and Wegmans, but any shop with a large cheese selection should carry it. Someday I might be adventurous and make the cheese as the book describes but for now we will just enjoy the unique texture of this cheese from the the local grocer. If you would like the recipe just drop a note and I will share that with you.

A scan of other recipes in the Cypriot section of the book noted an interesting ingredient for many; lambs brains. I am sure if I really tired I could find some in the greater Washington DC area, but I think we will pass on those and just keep reading. Anyway we will keep you posted on our progress and post a full review of the book.


2 Responses

  1. As my family knows I love this cheese as an appetizer. I grill it then sprinkle it with fresh lemon juice and finely chopped fresh herbs. It will also stand alone.

  2. I discovered halloumi a few years ago as I moved to Cyprus, never heard of it before. But straight away I fell in love with that delicious cheese that is so versatile and gives its special note to so many dishes. Very often we try new halloumi recipes and there is not one week since then, that we won’t have at least one meal with halloumi, not to speak about BBQs, where having halloumi is a must.

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