Author Topic: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared  (Read 8644 times)

Offline John (CH)

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Katy, Houston, Texas, USA
  • Posts: 4,069
  • Cheeses: 60
Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« on: January 16, 2010, 11:27:08 AM »
I'd like to make my first Haloumi today so I've researched and compared several recipes:

RECIPE LEGEND
a) Member Tea, cow's milk.
b) Member Johanyrh, raw Jersey cow's milk.
c) Member Gurkan from (buildanark.com website), goat's milk.
d) 1993 eBook by Charles O'Conner (with pictures), cow's milk.
e) 2009 Book "Cheese Making" by Rita Ash, high fat cow's milk.
f) 2005 Book "Making Artisan Cheese" by Tim Smith, cow's milk.
g) 2002 Book "Home Cheese Making" by Ricki Caroll, whole cow's milk.
h) 2009 Book "200 Easy Homemade Cheese Recipes" by Debra Amrien-Boyes, whole cow's milk.
Note: Did not summarize the video of Halloumi making as such a different method and product.

STEP #1 - PASTEURIZATION & MILK TEMPERATURE
a) Heat milk to 32c.
b) Heat the milk to 35°C (Acid 0.15 tot 0.17% )
c) Warm milk to 86°F
d) If necessary pasteurise the milk by heating to 73°C and cooling immediately to 32°C.
e) Heat milk to 34c/93F.
f) Heat milk to 86F/31C.
g) Heat milk to 86F/31C.
h) Heat milk to 90F/32C.

STEP #2 - ADDING LIPASE
a) No lipase used.
b) No lipase used.
c) No lipase used.
d) No lipase used.
e) No lipase used.
f) Optionally add lipase to give it tangy flavor associated with original sheep or goat's milk.
g) No lipase used.
h) No lipase used.

STEP #3 - ADDING STARTER CULTURE
a) No starter culture used.
b) No starter culture used.
c) No starter culture used.
d) No starter culture used.
e) Add starter if using pasteurized milk (stir well).
f) Add mesophilic starter culture (stir for 2 minutes).
g) Add mesophilic starter culture (mix well).
h) No starter culture used.

STEP #4 - ADDING CACL2
a) No CaCl2 used.
b) Add Calcium Chloride (CaCl) dissolved in water (10g/100 liter milk)
c) No CaCl2 used.
d) No CaCl2 used.
e) No CaCl2 used.
f) No CaCl2 used.
g) No CaCl2 used.
h) No CaCl2 used.

STEP #5 - ADDING RENNET
a) Add rennet.
b) Add rennet (Do not stir for longer than 2 minutes!!!)
c) Add rennet and let it sit.
d) Add rennet extract (about 3 ml per 10 litres of milk).
e) Immediately after adding starter culture, add diluted rennet.
f) Add rennet and stir for 1 minute.
g) Add rennet and stir for 1 minute up down.
h) Add rennet and stir for 1 minute up down without breaking surface.

STEP #6 - COAGULATION TIME
a) Allow to set for around 40 min, should be a firm set.
b) About 40 minutes.
c) After 45 minutes, you should see a clean break.
d) This should give a firm curd in 40–45 minutes.
e) Allow to set for around 45 min, should be a firm set.
f) About 40 minutes or until clean break.
g) About 30-45 minutes or until clean break.
h) No time given, cut after clean break.

STEP #7 - CUTTING CURD
a) Cut curd into 2-4cm cubes.
b) Cut the curd in cubes of about 0.5 to 1 cm.
c) Cut curds into ½” cubes.
d) Cut the curd into 3–4 cm cubes using horizontal and vertical curd cutting knives.
e) Cut curd into 3cm/1.25 in cubes.
f) Cut curds into ½” - 1 cm cubes.
g) Cut curds into ½” cubes.
h) Cut curds into 1” - 2.5 cm cubes.

STEP #8 - HEALING CUT CURDS
a) Let rest for 5 minutes.
b) No mentioned.
c) Let rest for 10 minutes or so.
d) Not mentioned.
e) Not mentioned.
f) Not mentioned.
g) Not mentioned.
h) Let rest for 5 minutes.

STEP #9 - COOKING CURDS
a) Slowly heat curd to 40c over next 20 mins stirring gently.
b) Increase the temperature to 45°C while stirring. The stirring process is carrying on until the curd is firm enough (Approx. 20 minutes). Drain the whey and keep it.
c) This step not used.
d) Stir the curds and whey mixture gently and heat to 38–42oC. Stir for 20 minutes after this temperature is reached.
e) Slowly heat curd to 42C / 108F while stirring gently, then stir gently for 20 min at 42C / 108F.
f) Slowly heat curd to 40C / 104F over 45 minutes while stirring gently to stop matting, then stir gently for 20 min at 40C / 104F.
g) Slowly heat curd to 40C / 104F over 45 minutes while stirring gently to stop matting, then stir gently every few minutes for 20 min at 40C / 104F.
h) Slowly heat curd to 40C / 104F over 40 minutes while stirring gently to stop matting, then stir gently every few minutes for 20 min at 40C / 104F.

STEP #10 - CURDS SETTLING TIME
a) Allow the curd to settle into a solid mass.
b) No information / this step not used.
c) No information / this step not used.
d) Allow the curd to settle.
e) Allow the curd to settle into a solid mass.
f) No information / this step not used.
g) No information / this step not used.
h) Let settle, no time given.

STEP #11 - PRESSING CURDS
a) Remove the whey (retain this for later use) and using ladle gently press down cheese to expel whey. Place curd into cheese cloth and tighten around curd. Weights may be added until firm enough. (Tea used 3 small square baskets, filled evenly and stacked and use their weight as a press rotating every 1/2 hour, and turning cheese every hour).
b) Place the curd in cloth and light press for 45 minutes. (I usually use 20 liter milk and transfer the curd to a form of 500mm x 400mm. I then place a 10 kg container of a slightly smaller size onto the curd)
c) Ladle curd into a colander lined with cheesecloth to drain, reserve whey. When drained, gently place in a cheese cloth lined hoop and press at 30 pounds of pressure for 1 hour. Remove from the mold and gently peel off the cheesecloth, turn, re-wrap, and press at 50 pounds of pressure for 30 minutes.
d) Ladle the whey off the curd and scoop the curd into a flat mould lined with cheese cloth. Press for about four hours.
e) Press the curd into a firm mat under the whey with the flat of your hand. Drain or ladle whey out of vat and set aside. Cut curd into 4in blocks then pile up in vat and cover with cloth. Place board on top of pile, add weight and leave to drain for two hours.
f) Drain off and retain whey, (optionally blend 1/2 teaspoon per 1 us gallon milk of dried mint rehydrated in 1/4 cup boiling water into drained curds). Place curds in cheesecloth lined mold and press with 30 pounds for one hour, turn the cheese and press at 40 pounds for 1 hour, cheese shoudl have spongy consistency.
g) Drain off and retain whey, place curds in cheesecloth lined mold and press with 30 pounds for one hour, turn the cheese and press at 50 pounds for 1/2 hour.
h) Ladle curds into cheese cloth lined mold, reserve whey, and press with medium weight for 3-4 hours.

STEP #12 - CUTING CURD INTO SERVING BLOCKS
a) Cut cheese into 5 cm x 10 cm x 15 cm pieces.
b) Cut the pressed curd into desirable sizes.
c) Remove the cheese from hoop and cut into ~ three inch blocks.
d) Remove the cheese from the press and cut it into 10 cm x 10 cm x 2 cm thick slices.
e) Cut curd into 10x15x5 cm (4x6x4 in).
f) Cut pressed curd into 2" - 5 c, thick strips.
g) Cut pressed curd into 3" square blocks.
h) Cut pressed curd into 4" x 4" x 1" blocks.

STEP #13 - BOILING SERVING BLOCKS
a) Bring whey to boiling point scooping out any excess curd, then turn off heat and place cut formed curds into hot whey, the curd will sink to the bottom. After 45 to 90 minutes the curd will float. Wait another 15 mins before removing.
b) Heat the whey to close to boiling point (90°C) and place shaped cut curd into the boiling whey, wait for it to surface and take it out.
c) Heat the reserved whey to between 180° - 200°F, then add the cheese blocks. Allow them to simmer gently for a half hour or so. The blocks should look and feel like cooked chicken breasts.
d) Heat the collected whey to 80–90oC and place the curd pieces in the hot whey. At first the curd pieces sink but when properly textured they rise to the surface. Transfer the pieces to a draining table.
e) Bring retained whey to boiling point and drop serving blocks into the boiling whey and simmer for 45 minutes or until blocks float in whey.
f) Heat the whey to 190F/88C, add strips of curd and cook for 1 hour at 190F/88C after which the cheese should have a thick consistency.
g) Heat the whey to 176-194F, add blocks of curd and cook for 1 hour at 190F/88C after which the cheese should have consistency of cooked chicken breast and will rise to surface.
h) Heat the whey to 190F/88C, add strips of curd (they will initially sink) and cook until curds proper texture which will be when floating.

STEP #14 - COOLING CHEESES
a) Place cheeses on a wooden rack and allow to cool for 20 mins.
b) This step not used.
c) Remove blocks from whey and cool on mat for about 20 minutes.
d) After about 20 minutes the curd pieces are cool.
e) Remove blocks and cool for ~ 20 minutes.
f) Drain into a cheesecloth lined colander and let rest-cool for 20 minutes at room temperature.
g) Drain into a cheesecloth lined colander and let rest-cool for 20 minutes at room temperature.
h) Drain on clean plate or cutting board for 15 min to cool.

STEP #15 - SALTING CHEESES
a) Sprinkle with salt then leave until cool.
b) After removing from boiling whey, add herbs and salt and leave to cool.
c) Sprinkle with salt, continue to cool on a mat for another 2 - 4 hours.
d) Sprinkle-rub the curd with 3–5% salt and fold each piece over.
e) Sprinkle with salt and allow to cool to room temperature.
f) Coat cheese with 1/4 cup - 75 gram salt per 1 US gallon milk and let rest for 2 hours.
g) Sprinkle blocks with 1/8 cup salt per 1 US gallon milk and let rest 2-4 hours to cool to room temperature.
h) Sprinkle each block with 1/4 teaspoon salt, place few mint leaves along one edge and fold cheese over to create a mint sandwich. Turn cheeses over and let drain and dry until cool.

STEP #16 - STORING CHEESES
a) Place the cheeses into a brine mix of 300gr salt to every liter water and store in fridge.
b) Store in brine or vacuum-pack. Shelf life is about 1 month.
c) Store in brine (2 pounds of coarse salt and 1 gallon of cold water) for up to sixty days.
d) Place the cold curd pieces into a containers and fill the container with 30% brine.
e) Optionally sprinkle herbs between the slabs and pack into container or plastic bags, eat fresh or refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
f) No information.
g) Place in saturated brine for up to 60 days, flavour increases with age.
h) Place in 2 cups water + 1/4 cup salt (0.5 l water & 50 ml salt) brine and store in fridge for up to 6 months.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2010, 02:08:12 PM by John (CH) »


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Offline John (CH)

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Katy, Houston, Texas, USA
  • Posts: 4,069
  • Cheeses: 60
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2010, 02:07:45 PM »
Summary of above recipes compared:
  • Average milk temperature is 90F/32C.
  • Lipase is an option especially if using cow's milk.
  • Mesophilic starter culture is an option.
  • CaCl2 is an option if using pasteurized milk.
  • Adding rennet is standard.
  • Coagulation time of 40 minutes.
  • Cut curds size ranges widely from 0.5-1.5" / 0.5 - 2.5 cm cubes.
  • Resting time not normally given but 5 min is standard in most cheese making.
  • Most recipes call for cooking the cut curds by raising to 40C / 104F over 40 minutes while stirring gently to stop matting, then stir gently every few minutes for 20 min at 40C / 104F. Except Gurkan's buildanark.net recipe which doesn't cook them before pressing.
  • Some recipes allow cut cooked curds to settle, some not.
  • Pressing varies widely, some had a pre-pressing step of pressing in whey by hand, main pressing varies in time and weight/pressures.
  • Cutting into serving sizes varied with most at 2" - 2.5 cm thick blocks.
  • Some boiled at boiling temp, some just below, time ranged but was mostly remove after curd floats.
  • Cooling averaged 20 minutes.
  • Sprinkling with salt was standard but amount of salt when detailed ranged significantly.
  • If not used immediately, storage ranged from plastic bags to vacuum bags to brine in fridge depending if wanted short of long shelf life.

Offline Tea

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,914
  • Cheeses: 27
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2010, 02:14:13 PM »
And so what is your final conclusion?  My recipe also said that after pressing, the cheese could be folded in half and mint leaves placed between the two layers.  But I make smaller blocks so this wasn't going to work for me.

Hope what ever method that you use turns out for you.

Offline John (CH)

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Katy, Houston, Texas, USA
  • Posts: 4,069
  • Cheeses: 60
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2010, 02:30:27 PM »
Hi Tracy, I think I'm going to try with my post above but with store bought cow's milk, without Lipase, and without meso starter, rest of steps although varied I think will all reasonably result in similar cheese as you basically boil it at end.

I'm going to use my 2 kg Gouda shaped Kadova mold to press the cooked curds in.

Only picture I have is poor attached one that says ingredients are Pasteurized Sheep's Milk, Salt, Non-Animal Rennet, & Mint.

Offline Tea

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,914
  • Cheeses: 27
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2010, 02:37:34 PM »
Good luck with everything, and keep us updated.


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Offline John (CH)

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Katy, Houston, Texas, USA
  • Posts: 4,069
  • Cheeses: 60
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2010, 07:25:16 AM »
Tea, posted record of making my first batch here.

A little more research on Haloumi Cheese . . .

Cypriot based Akgol Dairies website info page on Halloumi says that:
  • Tradionally it is made every few days when enough goat's and sheep's milk is ready (thus could have natural lactic acid culture in it?).
  • It's almost rubbery texture come from being re-cooked.
  • Whilst still warm the cheeses are sprinkled with a mixture of salt and dried mint and folded and stored in brine.
  • This folding process gives the cheese its distinctive shape.
  • Can be stored frozen.
Cypriot bases G & I Keses Dairy products website info page on Halloumi says that:
  • Traditionally it was made in straw baskets.
  • Use goat and sheep's milk.
  • They "thicken" the milk.
  • Traditional shape is half circle.
  • Picture of woman is of what looks like large ricotta type molds over filled with curds. (Probably by dropping another mold of curds on top to give it that domed appearance? Doesn't look like you could press in those plastic molds).
  • Picture of man is I assume of flat boiled slices on cooling table where they can be dry salted.
Some interesting pictures at Cyprus Somis Dairies (presumably of making Halloumi?).

Some interesting pictures at Cyprus Mt Victos Dairy, of making Halloumi, again ricotta type baskets and says curds in baskets are turned before being cooked or boiled (no mention of pressing!).

Cypriot town of Letymybou's info on Haloumi making says:
  • Cut curds are placed in wicker baskets and later on pressed on hand so that all the liquids are removed (no 50 pounds like in recipes above).
  • Whey stays in vat to make Anari (re-cooked ricotta type cheese) and then used to cook the pressed Halloumi curds.
Cypriot Papouis Dairies says they use baskets and cook at 90 C for 1 hour.

So in summary, I don't think the above recipes are correct in pressing with heavy weights. Anyone else have information?

Offline Tea

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,914
  • Cheeses: 27
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2010, 02:43:29 PM »
When I make mine, I just place the baskets on top of one another and use that as the pressing weight.  I just keep rotating them around, and turning the cheese in the basket every so often.   Other than that I don't use any other external weight.

Offline Lennie

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Posts: 158
  • Cheeses: 4
  • Default personal text
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2010, 06:50:41 PM »
I like the looks of your cheese's texture Tea.  I think the pressing is probably a matter of personal taste.  The cheese should shrink and expel most of the whey during the cooking in the boiling whey right?

I'm starting a batch now, part of the reason I eschew a long/heavy press is I started the batch at about 6:30PM!

Excellent thread John.  Very inspiring.  This is a cheese a new cheesemaker should try.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2010, 07:59:08 PM by Lennie »

Offline John (CH)

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Katy, Houston, Texas, USA
  • Posts: 4,069
  • Cheeses: 60
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2011, 06:07:50 AM »
Member fied posted a fun Guardian UK Newspaper quiz with pictures (and presumably questions sourced) from British guru Juliet Harbutt.

I got question 16 wrong:
16. The unique texture of this cheese results from kneading of the curds. What is it?
Correct answer: Halloumi
You answered: Grace (which was my WAG)

From all the work comparing the above recipes and from digging into those other websites, I don't think I saw anything on kneading (don't consider folding cheese over mint leaves to be kneading).

Anyone else have any knowledge on kneading when making Halloumi?

Offline Tomer1

  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Israel
  • Posts: 1,669
  • Cheeses: 33
  • Default personal text
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2011, 12:48:10 PM »
Never heard of this process.
To my understanding the unique texture and squick just comes from the post pressing\draining cooking in whey.
Otherwise the texture is very paste or just as rubbery as any other high ph fresh cheese.
Amatuar winemaker,baker, cook and musician
not in any particular order.


Guests, join the CheeseForum.org community to remove this ad.


Offline Gürkan Yeniçeri

  • The one who masters temperature and humidity can make any cheese.
  • Old Cheese
  • *****
  • Location: Canberra / Australia
  • Posts: 644
  • Cheeses: 26
  • It's not a hobby, it's an addiction, a good one.
    • Artizan Peynirci
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2011, 04:23:03 PM »
I was watching the Cheese Slices DVD last night on Halloumi. Yes, although the recipe differs from dairy to dairy in Cyprus, some of them do a light kneading in the cheesecloth on a SS bench for a while.

Offline Sy

  • New Cheese
  • *
  • Location: South Africa
  • Posts: 2
  • Cheeses: 0
  • Default personal text
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2012, 03:39:02 AM »
Hi All, I have a problem with boiling the pressed curds. They disintegrate in the boiling water, even at a low simmer. Anybody know why?

Offline Schnecken Slayer

  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Newcastle, Australia
  • Posts: 429
  • Cheeses: 14
  • Making cheese since October 2012
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2012, 03:44:34 AM »
I don't think that you should be boiling them. 

As per one of the recipes above:-
 Heat the collected whey to 80–90oC and place the curd pieces in the hot whey. At first the curd pieces sink but when properly textured they rise to the surface. Transfer the pieces to a draining table.
-Bill
One day I will add something here...

Offline Spellogue

  • Michael
  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Ohio
  • Posts: 303
  • Cheeses: 14
  • Default personal text
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2013, 01:24:04 PM »
Found this topic as I consider my next batch of Halloumi this season.  Very informative.

Here are the make notes from the recipe I used last year.

FH6H.    Haloumi  6/25/12.
    1 gallon goat milk
    Starter none. Bring to 90F over 30 min.
    Rennet. 1/2 tsp veg set 10min                   
    Heat to 130 45 min.
   Cut 2" leave at 130 5 min.
   Use whisk to break into rice size curds.  Stir at 130 5 min.
  Layer with chopped fresh mint in cheesecloth lined colander, drain 60 min under 8 lbs saving whey. 
   Heat whey to 190.
   Slice cheese 1 1/2 inch thick.
   Cook sliced cheese in  whey 20 min. 
   Pack in 10% brine.

This recipe worked so well for me that I am loathe to make changes to it.
I still have a stash of it from last year stored in the fridge that is 10 months old and still eating great. 
It was a tad salty for my wife's liking, so I might try a 7.5% brine on the next make.  I used only ND milk last year but I'm going to make a batch from grade milk (Nubian/LaMancha).  I'm curious to see if the different breed's milk will make a noticeable difference in the cheese.


   
I can resist anything but temptation.      ~ Oscar Wilde

Offline Spellogue

  • Michael
  • Mature Cheese
  • ****
  • Location: Ohio
  • Posts: 303
  • Cheeses: 14
  • Default personal text
Re: Halloumi Cheese Making - Eight Recipes Compared
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2013, 01:33:46 PM »
The thread started by cheeseslovesu here has a lot of great info too.  It reminded me that I made ricotta from the whey after the final simmering and removal of the cheese chunks by adding vinegar.  It was mint flavored and had a slight green cast.  It was delicious.
I can resist anything but temptation.      ~ Oscar Wilde