Nearly all of my favourite meals involve cheese in some way. To me there’s only one thing as satisfying as eating cheese… and that’s making it. I discovered cheesemaking thanks to my friend Kat. We made goats cheese together a few years ago using a kit she bought me for Christmas. Since then I’ve made mozzarella and now halloumi!
The Big Cheese Making Kit sent me this Ultimate Cheese Making Kit, which contains everything you need to make ten different types of cheese. All you need to add is milk. I bought four litres of milk before realising my pan would only hold two litres. Still, that made plenty of halloumi for two people.
First I heated the milk, added rennet and sat the pan in a warm water bath — a glorified term for my sink. The instructions said to leave the pan undisturbed, which mean’t I had to resist the urge to keeping poking it.
Forty five minutes later, a solid cheese curd had formed. I cut it into smaller chunks and heated them in the whey.
Once the curds had heated to the correct temperature, I scooped them out into a cheesecloth ready for pressing. Like the water bath, my press wasn’t very high tech — two water filled milk bottles with a plate on top 🙂
Ta-dah! The brain like curds were starting to look like real cheese!
I cut the halloumi into slabs and poached them in the whey. Each side was then coated in salt and mint and left to cool on a wire rack. My stomach said we should eat it straight away but the instructions said halloumi tastes better if sits and absorbs the salt for twenty four hours. So that’s what I did.
My halloumi in all its golden, fried glory…
We ate ours piled high with cranberry sauce, pistachios, garlic mayo, salad and toasted ciabatta. It was so so good! Pillowy soft in the middle with a slight squeak and a crispy outside. I wished my pan had been large enough to hold more than two litres of milk so I could have made more cheese.
Making halloumi is the perfect Sunday morning activity. Although there were a few steps to work through, half that time was spent waiting for curds to form or press so it didn’t feel like hard work. If you decide not to let it sit for 24 hours, you can have freshly made halloumi in time for lunch. Lovely!
Disclaimer: The Big Cheese Making Kit kindly sent me The Ultimate Cheese Making Kit in exchange for an honest review. Thoughts and photography my own.