Haloumi is a Greek semi-hard and unripened cheese made from a mixture of goat’s milk, sheep’s milk, and sometimes cow’s milk. It has a stretchy and rubbery texture and has a high melting point, making it a great cheese for frying and grilling. Haloumi also does well in hot weather because the salt on its surface inhibits the growth of molds and bad bacteria.
Here’s a recipe for this tangy and salty cheese.
Yield: Approximately 450g of Haloumi cheese
Aging Time: None
1. 3.7 L (1 gallon) of whole milk. Use the non ultra pasteurized milk
2. ¼ teaspoon MA 4002 Mesophilic Starter Culture
3. ½ teaspoon liquid rennet (dilute in ¼ cup cool water)
4. Cheese salt
5. 3.7 L (1 gallon) cold water for brining
1. A large pot
2. Good thermometer
3. Curd knife or curd cutter
4. Slotted ladle
5. Basket cheese hoop
6. Draining mat
Reminder: Sterilize all your equipment before cheese making.
1. Pour the milk into the pot and bring to 30° C (86° F) on low heat.
2. Once you’ve reached the target temperature, add the mesophilic culture. Stir well. If you want to use calcium chloride (for pasteurized milk), you add it at this point. Stir the milk well to mix the culture thoroughly with the milk.
3. Pour in the diluted rennet. Stir slowly and gently in up and down strokes for 1 minute. Stir a bit longer if you are using farm fresh cow’s milk.
4. Cover the pot. Allow the milk to ripen for 45 minutes.
5. Check for a clean break. Once you have it, cut the curds into ½ inch cubes. Gently stir the curds.
6. Gradually increase the temperature to 38° C to 40° C (100° F to 106° F) for the next 20 to 30 minutes. The higher the temperature, the drier the resulting haloumi cheese. Continually stir while increasing the temperature to prevent the curds from matting.
7. Maintain the target temperature for 20 minutes. Continue to stir the curds every now and again.
8. Scoop the whey out of the pot and into another bowl.
9. Line the colander with cheesecloth. Place a bowl under the colander to collect the remaining whey. Pour the curds into the colander to drain.
10. Transfer the curds into a cheese hoop lined with a clean cheese cloth. Press at a pressure of 4.5 kg for 3 hours.
11. Take the cheese out of the hoop, peel away the cheese cloth and flip the cheese over. Redress it and put it back into the hoop. Press again at a pressure of 4.5 kg for another 3 hours.
12. Heat the collected whey to 87.7° C (190° F). Maintain this temperature once reached.
13. Place the pressed cheese in the hot whey and cook for 30 to 35 minutes or until you notice that it has shrunk a bit and floats in the whey.
14. Carefully remove the cheese from the whey. Put in on a rack to dry and cool for 45 minutes. The cheese should be dry and cool to the touch after this process.
15. Make the brine. Mix 793g (28 ounces) of salt in 3.7 L (1 gallon) of water. Chill this at a temperature of 12.7° C.
16. Put the dried cheese in a large plastic bowl. Pour the brine over the cheese until the cheese is completely soaked. If the cheese floats, weigh it down with something heavy that was sterilized.
17. Store the cheese in the brine and place in the refrigerator for 5 to 10 days.
18. Take the cheese out and wrap it in cheese paper. You can store your haloumi in the fridge for up to 2 months
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