NUTRITION

How To Make Halloumi Cheese At Home

In the era of DIY projects, it only makes sense to be able to make your own Halloumi cheese as well. This white, tangy, and salty cheese can be eaten raw, but is best recommended for recipes that involve frying or grilling. Chennai-based certified cheese artisan, Namrata Sunderesan tells you how you make your own.

By Namrata Sundaresan
09 February 2022

Traditionally made with either goat or sheep’s milk, in this recipe we’ll be using cow’s milk, which is more readily available to make this healthy cheese that is filled with beneficial minerals.

 

Halloumi, like other dairy products, is rich in calcium, which plays an essential role in keeping our bones and teeth strong. It also enhances the flexibility of our muscles. Halloumi also contains protein that contributes greatly to our muscle mass and promotes the production of antibodies that keep diseases away. A one-ounce portion of halloumi cheese provides about seven grams of protein to the body.

 

Halloumi has high salt content and is made of 70–80 grams of unprocessed sea salt per litre of water. Sea salt is a rich source of sodium and helps maintain fluid balance in the body which in turn promotes healthy blood pressure. Every 100 grams of this cheese contains about three grams of the daily value of sodium.

 

This cheese is also a great source of saturated fats. These fats have multiple health benefits. They provide the required sturdiness and strength for the cells in our body and enhance bone health. The saturated fats also contain antimicrobial properties which safeguard against harmful microorganisms in our digestive tract. 100 grams of this cheese contains about 24 grams fat and 17 grams of saturated fat.

 

Keeping these overarching benefits in mind, this is how you can make your own halloumi cheese by yourself.

 

Ingredients list

  • Cow Milk: 15 litres
  • Rennet: 8 g microbial rennet
  • Unprocessed sea salt: 70 g per litre of water

 

Preparation

 

Step 1 :

In a large container pour the cow’s milk. Add the rennet and and wait until the milk turns solid. This step is important as milk is only 10 percent solid, and this recipe requires separating the solid from the liquid.

 

Step 2 :

Cut the solidified milk with a long bread knife horizontally and vertically across the width of the container. This step is essential as it helps separate the curd from the whey.

 

Step 3 :

The texture of the curd will now be soft. Cook the curdon low flame for 20 mins (30–50°C) to give it a more solid structure. Stir the liquid gently to break any big pieces of curd, further.

 

Step 4 :

Keep cooking till the curd develops a more elastic texture. Once this texture is achieved, you will know that it is cooked. Keep in mind the consistency of scrambled eggs.

 

Step 5 :

Drain the curd from the container and add it to a muslin cloth in a cheese press.

 

Step 6 :

Adjust the lever to completely press the halloumi cheese. Keep the machine aside and let the liquid drain off completely for an hour or two. During this period, the cheese will turn into a big block because of the rennet and the heat.

 

Step 7 :

Cut the cheese block and cook the halloumi cheese again in the hot whey, before salting. Now, the Halloumi cheese is double cooked and has developed a tougher texture.

 

Step 8 :

Transfer the cooked halloumi to a saturated brine. In the brine, each litre of water contains 70-80 gms of sea salt. The cheese should have a spongy, elastic texture in this stage. The halloumi should soak in the brine for about 10 minutes to absorb the salt. Expert tip: We can only use unprocessed sea salt for cheese-making, because salt with iodine cannot be used.

 

Step 9 :

Grill the cooked Halloumi over a pan, until all sides of the cheese develop a nice golden crust. Halloumi cheese has a very high melting point, which makes it easy to grill or fry. Your healthy Halloumi cheese is now ready to eat. You can serve it with freshly cut pineapple.

 

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