When you marry someone from another country, as my best friend did, sometimes there are profound differences in ordinary routines from day to day. Those differences take the form of when to eat, for example, or what to eat for breakfast. Michele would think nothing of running out the door with a piece of cold pizza on her way to work, but her husband, not so much. Fortunately, one morning years ago when George introduced her to halloumi, a sheep and goat cheese from Cyprus, it was love at first bite. He grilled it over a low flame on the stovetop and served it to her with coffee and Mandarin orange slices. “When we are married, I will always peel your Mandarin oranges,” he promised, and he’s done it ever since. She swears he has!
Now, their love didn’t blossom over their shared love of this Cypriot cheese, but halloumi is so good that it could have; it’s probably powerful enough. It’s certainly strong enough to be grilled by itself, in pieces, without melting all over the place. It’s firm, squeaky, sharp, and holds its own in a flatbread sandwich.
You might successfully find halloumi in grocery stores or specialty gourmet shops with a strong Greek foods selection, or online. And when you do, buy some Mandarin oranges too, to have on the side…
-Amy at Flatout
Grilled Halloumi with Pickled Onions
- 1 Flatout Foldit flatbread
- 2 slices halloumi cheese
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1-2 slices red onion
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1-2 slices fresh tomato
- 1 lettuce leaf
- 3-4 kalamata olives, pitted
- lemon wedge
- pinch of dried oregano
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat panini press. Put the red onion into a small bowl and pour the vinegar over the slices, tossing a bit to cover the onions, then set aside.
Put the olive oil into a frying pan and fry the halloumi slices over a medium to high heat on both sides, until golden brown and crispy around the edges. Place the halloumi slices on one half of the flatbread and then squeeze the lemon juice over the cooked cheese slices. Sprinkle a few oregano leaves over the cheese then add the sliced tomatoes and pickled onions. Fold in half.
Put the flatbread into a pre-heated panini press for about 2 minutes, or until the flatbread is crisp and golden brown.
Serve immediately with fresh lettuce leaves and a handful of black olives.
Suggested Flatout: Foldit® - Traditional White