Feta cheese, recognizable by its salty and crumbly texture, is a well-known ingredient in many Mediterranean dishes, from Greek salad to spanakopita. While its distinctive flavor has garnered a considerable fanbase, it’s also been a point of contention for some, leading them to search for an alternative. Enter halloumi, another Mediterranean cheese hailing from Cyprus, offering a milder flavor and firmer texture.
- Origin and Composition: Both feta and halloumi have roots in the Mediterranean, with the former from Greece and the latter from Cyprus. Both cheeses are derived from sheep’s milk, giving them a certain level of creaminess.
- Taste and Texture: Halloumi is more neutral in taste compared to the potent flavor of feta. Both cheeses are available in block form. While feta is known to crumble easily, halloumi has a unique “squeaky” texture and is semi-hard, making it firmer than feta.
- Cooking Properties: A shared characteristic between the two cheeses is their high melting points, making them excellent choices for grilling. When grilled, halloumi achieves a crispy exterior while maintaining a soft interior.
- Versatility in Dishes: Halloumi’s milder flavor allows it to seamlessly fit into a variety of recipes, both Mediterranean and otherwise. From being grilled with tomatoes on skewers to starring in vegetarian tacos or paired with sweet components like in a watermelon salad, halloumi’s adaptability is commendable.
In conclusion, for those who find feta’s flavor too overpowering, halloumi serves as a delightful and versatile alternative, offering a more subdued taste without sacrificing the familiar Mediterranean charm.