The weather’s warming up, and as such, folks are starting to dust off their grills for some good, old-fashioned grilling action. Today’s guest post is from Angie Simpson, a fabulous Bay Area foodie who’s all about food that’s both healthy and interesting – and what’s not intriguing that cheese you can throw on the grill, straight-up? Please welcome Angie and answer her question in the comments: what do you use smoked paprika for?
After a recent beach day, we’d decided to make pizza in an attempt to use up the rest of our CSA box. On a quest for interesting cheese to make chard taste good, we stumbled into The Cheese Boutique in the Sunset District of San Francisco. Unlike most cheese shops in SF, it’s pretty no frills, and as one online review pointed out, it’s not the
kind of place where they know the goat herder and the goats get weekly Reiki attunements. But they did have a solid selection at decent prices, and tiny little packages of Haloumi—billed as the cheese you can grill. And as any foodie knows, cheese has the power to make any day better.
Indigenous to Cyprus, Greece, Haloumi tastes and has a texture like a mixture of feta and mozzarella. Haloumi has a higher melting point than most cheeses, which makes it ideal for grilling as it holds it shape under high heat. It won’t get runny or gooey, and you can create some beautiful char marks to increase visual appeal. We pan fried ours as part of a late night snack, but can’t wait to break out the barbeque to make more.
We’ve also been playing around with smoked paprika; I’d love to hear what dishes you use it for!
Mediterranean Mezes: Haloumi Squares with Tapenade
- 1 tin of smoked paprika
- 2 pounds Haloumi cheese
- 1 jar of Kalamata olive tapenade
- A handful of cherry tomatoes
- 1 bunch flat leaf parsley
- Slice the Haloumi into pieces between a quarter and half inch thick. Lightly dust the slices with smoked paprika and gently rub into the surface of the cheese.
- Over medium heat, pan-fry the cheese until brown and crispy on the outside. The cheese will bubble off some of the oil and develop a crunchy crust. And should any small pieces crumble off the edges, those can be tossed in the pan too for a little nibble of yum.
- Once the cheese is crispy to your liking, top with tapenade and garnish with parsley and a cherry tomato.
- We found that these were best warm and gooey, but were still pretty tasty at room temperature.
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