THE FULL TASTE OF MEDITERRANEAN COOKING
- Historical origins
Halloumi cheese has been around for many centuries and the name Halloumi is automatically connected to Cyprus. According to legends and available data Halloumi has been produced for hundreds of years in Cyprus both for domestic use and export.
There are different possibilities regarding the derivation of its name. One purports that the name Halloumi has derived from the Arabic word “khllum” that means cheese. Another suggests that the name originated from the ancient Greek word that means “salt”. The first references that link Halloumi with Cyprus date back to 1554 AD. Archimandrite Kyprianos (1788) mentions that Halloumi cheese was exported 144 years prior to 1788. In his book Geoponiko (1643), Monk Agapios describes the method of making Halloumi cheese.
A few years ago Cyprus managed to obtain exclusive rights to the name Halloumi within the US and the EU registration process is currently underway.
- Product characteristics
Halloumi is a soft to semi-hard white cheese made from sheep, goats or cows milk. It is springy in texture and the original flavour is salty, mellow and tangy. Some people say it is very salty but this is Halloumi. The unique and special property of Halloumi is its ability to retain its shape upon cooking (frying & grilling).
- Production process
Halloumi cheese is often made from sheep and goat milk and flavoured with mint. It can also be produced from a blend of sheep, goat and cow milk. It is made of pressed curd that is the result of the curdling of milk with rennet, for the formation of coagulated casein. The curd is cooked, salted and flavoured with mint. It is then shaped in the traditional folded shape and stored in its natural juices with salt and water. The traditional fine Halloumi contains no preservatives and the milk is not pasteurized. Any change in its components, the milk origin for example, results in a change in taste.
- Nutritional Features
Rich in calcium, high in protein and lactic flora substances, and with a high vitamin and mineral salt content, it is highly nutritional.
- How to enjoy
Halloumi has many applications in the food industry. It can be used on cheeseboards, antipasto platters, in sandwiches and toasted sandwiches, summer salads, in cooked dishes etc.
Halloumi can be eaten at room temperature. This way you get all the flavours and mouthfeel upon eating.
Halloumi is also very delicious when fried. The look itself is delicious. When fried the top layer becomes gold in colour and the inside becomes soft making a very remarkable taste.
Halloumi can be grated to be toping for any kind of pasta.
Grate it or dice it straight into a salad.
Sliced Halloumi can be used for sandwiches together with sliced tomato or olives or whatever you like, for example lettuce. You can have it cold or put that sandwich in the toaster.
Try Halloumi sliced while eating melon and watermelon. This is very common way of eating Halloumi in Cyprus.
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