Cyprus Products for Export – Halloumi & Other Cheese Products
Halloumi, is the most unique of the Cypriot delicacies and is registered as a Cyprus product only. The Ministry of Commerce is establishing the rule that only cheese made in Cyprus can be marketed as Halloumi.
Halloumi cheese has been produced in Cyprus for centuries. Traditionally a group of women in the village makes it, from a mixture of sheep, goat and cow milk. Every few days, once sufficient milk has been collected, it is heated in a large cauldron, and then rennet is added to start the curdling process. Once the curds are set into a soft cheese they are cut and removed from the whey and pressed. The halloumi is then re-cooked, which results in its firm, almost rubbery texture. Whilst still warm the cheeses are sprinkled with a mixture of salt and dried mint, folded, and stored in brine. This folding process gives the cheese its distinctive shape.
Fresh halloumi is excellent with watermelon or figs, or indeed with any seasonal fruit. Although halloumi lovers regard this as probabimage if pan fried Halloumi Cheesely the best way to enjoy the cheese, many people prefer it cooked. Halloumi claims to be the only cheese in the world that can be eaten and enjoyed either raw or cooked in any possible way, fried, grilled, baked or boiled. Chunky slices can be grilled either under a stove grill or on the barbecue, or they can be fried lightly in a little oil to a crunchy crispness.
The versatility of halloumi is such that it can be used in pies and pasties, it can be cooked with chicken or with fish, or grated and served with pasta. It is particularly good in ravioli, a popular dish in Cyprus, probably dating back to the 13th or 14th century. If halloumi cheese is simmered in water for about 5 minutes, until it gets soft, it loses some of its salt and fat content, a healthy option and yet another flavor surprise.
Anari is another delicious fresh cheese from Cyprus. It is made traditionally by adding milk to the whey left after making halloumi. If not consumed fresh, the cheese is salted and air-dried. The resulting very tasty hard grating cheese is used to flavour homemade pastas and pies.
It is a hard type of traditional Cyprus cheese prepared from 100% pasteurised sheep’s milk. It is considered to be one of the best and and most expensive cheeses and it’s preparation is very complicated. It contains a maximum moisture of 38%, 48% fat in dry matter and 2,5% salt. Storing temperature is 5ºC.