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Wednesday
Jul092008

Want to Help your Blood Pressure Skyrocket? Try This Lip-Smackin'-Good Cheese

Halloumi is a lovely salty affair from the island of Cyprus. If you love the taste of fried cheese but are looking for a (non)-healthy alternative, then here’s your match.

Standard Halloumi tastes as if it’s been fried with oil, butter, and extra salt, but in fact the cheese is naturally tangy and is best served simply grilled with nothing else. Made from a blend of sheep’s and goat’s milk, as well as the occasional cow’s milk, it has a delightful tang and brininess that gives it a kick. I really could eat this cheese all the time and be perfectly happy. When you sink your teeth into this warm, softened cheese (and you must eat it freshly grilled to get the full effect), you’ll swear it’s been fried. Because of the cheese’s high melting point, it will brown and bring out the tangy oils without actually melting. No warm cheese really compares in my mind, except perhaps Greek Saganaki or Authentic Saganaki, which are very different, but also amazingly addictive.

Halloumi is known as a Middle Eastern food as well as a food from Cyprus. When the cheese is made industrially it’s often “stretched” with cow’s milk, but naturally this changes its composition and flavor. When purchasing Halloumi you’ve got to be sure you’re buying a true artisanal batch, and not a cheap imitation. I’ve also found that Halloumi made in Cyprus to be superior to its Middle Eastern counterpart.

When of high quality and grilled to perfection, this briny cheese is not to be missed whether you see it on a menu or travel there in person.

 



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