Recipe: Battered Halloumi

vegetarian-battered-halloumi

I love halloumi. I love the saltiness, the squeakiness and the oh-my-god-it’s-just-so-fucking-delicious-ness of it. In the fridge languished half a block that needed to be used up and instead of stuffing it in the portobella mushrooms that are also languishing in the fridge needing to be used up, I decided to batter the halloumi, like they do in my local chippy.

I’ve made Yorkshire Puddings and battered tofu before, but I’ve never made a chip shop type batter. I whisked up the flour, milk and baking powder and seasoned it with salt and pepper but I felt it was missing something. The Meat Eater said it wasn’t and said that was how batter is made so I took his word for it, even though he couldn’t tell me how he knew how to make batter. He also assured me that it’s supposed to be the texture of wallpaper paste.

This battered halloumi was so, so good. It was even better than the chip shop’s. The halloumi had softened and lost its squeak and weirdly developed the texture of fish.

I don’t have a deep fat fryer, so I used the Tefal wok-type pan I use for almost everything. I’ve had it over ten years and I still think it’s brilliant and you can buy one here. (This post isn’t sponsored by Tefal, I just wanted to tell you how much I love my wok.)

Now I want to batter all the things.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Battered Halloumi
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • ½ block halloumi, sliced into 4 pieces
  • 60g plain flour
  • 30ml water
  • 30ml milk
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • salt and pepper
  • Oil for deep frying
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large pan or deep fat fryer if you have one
  2. Whisk together the flour, milk, water and baking powder and season with salt and pepper
  3. Check the oil is hot enough by dropping in a bit of batter. If it floats and sizzles, the oil is hot enough
  4. Dredge the halloumi in the batter and fry for 5-10 minutes, until golden, turning over a few times

 

If you like the look of this battered halloumi, you may also like these beer battered mushrooms from Amuse Your Bouche.


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Vegan Toasted Cheese and Chorizo Sandwich

Vegan toasted cheese and chorizo sandwich
Vegan cheese and chorizo toasted sandwich

I blogged about Violife vegan cheese a couple of years ago and, at the time, I was kind of, ‘Well, Violife’s okay, I suppose, but nothing special’. Since then, I’ve changed my mind and, while I’m not saying it’s the best thing I’ve ever eaten, it’s definitely the best vegan cheese I’ve ever eaten.

Today I used some in a toasted vegan cheese and chorizo sandwich. As you can see in the above photo, Violife melts beautifully and it went really well with the vegan chorizo I made from The Gentle Chef‘s new book – Seitan and Beyond.

Vegan chorizo from Seitan and Beyond by the Gentle Chef
Vegan chorizo from Seitan and Beyond by The Gentle Chef

This chorizo is fab; juicy, spicy, delicious, easy to make and contains easy-to-find ingredients (the only ingredients you’re probably not going to find in the supermarket – at least not here in the UK – are vital wheat gluten and liquid smoke, but these are easy enough and cheap enough to buy online). I can’t share the recipe with you as The Gentle Chef doesn’t allow his recipes to be shared but if you love your mock meat products I recommend you buy Seitan and Beyond, either as a pdf (with photos) from his website, or as a hard copy (without photos) from Amazon.

Vegan chorizo from Seitan and Beyond by The Gentle Chef
Vegan chorizo from Seitan and Beyond by The Gentle Chef

I know you don’t need a recipe for how to make a sandwich, but here it is anyway.

Vegan Toasted Cheese and Chorizo Sandwich
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Sandwich
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 2 slices of bread
  • Violife cheese, sliced from the block
  • 3 slices of vegan chorizo
  • A few leaves of baby spinach
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • Vegan salad cream (Asda's own brand light salad cream is vegan)
  • Dairy-free spread (I used Pure)
Instructions
  1. Spread the bread with the dairy-free spread
  2. Add the spinach leaves on to one of the slices of bread
  3. Add the Violife
  4. Add the chorizo
  5. Add the sliced tomato
  6. Squeeze the salad cream on
  7. Top with the remaining slice of bread
  8. Grill in a George Foreman grill or sandwich toaster for about 10 minutes

 

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Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

vegan-cashew-nut-cheese

I’m sorry, I really am going to stop gushing about the What Fat Vegans Eat Facebook page soon but here’s another recipe I was inspired to make after seeing everyone’s home-made vegan cheese on there. Some looked a bit complicated for a noob like me, so I scouted around for some other recipes until I found a simple one with easy-to-source ingredients.

Despite the recipe I found being simple, it does take three days to make, simply because there’s a lot of sitting about (the ingredients, not you, although you are of course perfectly welcome to put your feet up and watch repeats of Eastenders while you wait for it). I also ended up blending the cashews with my hand blender because my cheapy blender wasn’t up to the job and didn’t get the nuts smooth enough.

vegan-cashew-nut-cheese-slice

From what I’ve read on other blogs, you can skip the last ‘place in the fridge overnight bit’ if you want to, but from what I can gather, if you do leave it to drain for longer, the cheese will be firmer. Saying that though, no more liquid drained out after leaving it to sit overnight.

I’m not going to lie – this isn’t going to make you think you’re eating vintage mature Cheddar; it’s not even going to make you think you’re eating Philadelphia (other cream cheeses are available) but it’s nice for what it is. It’s smooth and creamy with a bit of a tang. The supermarket had run out of chives so I had to leave those out but next time I’ll definitely make it herbier and maybe add some chilli flakes.

I spread it thickly on rice cakes and ground black pepper over it.

vegan-cashew-nut-cheese-on-rice-cakes

This recipe was taken from In Vegetables We Trust.

Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese

1 1/2 cups raw cashews
4 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
3 tbsp water, plus water to soak the cashews
3 spring onions, sliced
2 tbsp chopped chives
3 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
A pinch of sea salt
A pinch of ground black peppepr

  1. Soak the cashews in the fridge overnight, or up to 24 hours.
  2. Drain and rinse the cashews and add to a blender/food processor with the cider vinegar, lemon juice and water.
  3. Blend until smooth as possible, adding up to another 2 tbsp of water if necessary.
  4. Transfer the cashew puree to a mixing bowl and fold in the remaining ingredients.
  5. Line a sieve with cheese cloth and place the sieve over a bowl.
  6. Add the cashew mixture, smooth out the top and carefully fold over the sides of the cheese cloth.
  7. Leave on the side for about 2 hours and discard the liquid that has drained out into the bowl.
  8. Place in the fridge overnight to allow even more water to drain and the cream cheese to firm up.
  9. After allowing it to sit overnight, carefully unfold the cheese cloth and turn the cashew cream cheese out onto a plate.
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