Haloumi

1:15 pm on 28 April 2012

Method derived from Cyprus Gardener

Preparation time: 2 hours

Ingredients

  • 5 litres whole milk (traditionally sheep and/or goat) milk
  • 1 tsp renco rennet or vegetarian alternative
  • salt (uniodised)

Equipment

  • big pot
  • long stirring implement
  • knife for cutting curds
  • cheesecloth/muslin or chux cloths (sanitised Milton tablets work well, or you can boil for 10 minutes)

Method

Add the rennet, diluted in a little cool, boiled water to the fresh milk which has been heated gently to 35 degrees C (use a thermometer to ensure the correct heat) and leave for about 30 minutes to set.

Cut the curds into cubes, 1-3cms, stir very gently after resting for 5 minutes until they reach 40 degrees.

Place the solids into a large muslin bag or several, and allow the whey to drain into a pan. Alternatively press in a colander with a bowl of water on top, or similar – this is not a fussy cheese!

When drained and firm, cut the pieces into the size of a playing card or thereabouts.

Return the halloumi curds to the boiling whey and simmer for about 20 minutes until the halloumi pieces float. Allow them to cool fully, salt (dry salt or store in a saturated brine) place in the fridge to store, can be frozen. Use within a week or two.

The remaining whey can be used to cook pasta in, as a base for soup, to replace the water in bread making or on the garden. Mineral and protein rich!

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