George Calombaris showcases haloumi paired with quince and date chutney two ways using fresh herbs, citrus and vegetables.
For the Haloumi, sterilise all equipment.
Combine the goat and cow milk in a large stockpot and warm to 33°C.
Remove stockpot from the heat, add the vegetable rennet and use a ladle to stir the milk up and down for 1 minute. Cover with a lid and set aside at room temperature for 45 minutes.
For the Quince and Date Chutney, gather the quince skins in a piece of muslin cloth and tie to secure.
Combine quince, quince skins in muslin, apples, dates, cinnamon, lime juice, salt, sugar, ginger, water, apple cider vinegar, chilli, coriander and cardamom in a stockpot over low-medium heat. Simmer chutney for 20-25 minutes or until quince and apple are tender.
For the Haloumi, whilst in the pot, roughly cut the curds into cubes and set the pot aside at room temperature to rest for 5 minutes.
Place stockpot over high heat and warm to 40°C. Set the pot aside to rest for 5 minutes. Pour curds into a large perforated steamer tray positioned high over a large tray to catch the whey. Use your hands to press the curds down and remove excess whey. Place a solid tray of the same size on top and use gentle weights, to press down. Place in the fridge for 2 hours.
For the Quince and Date Chutney, transfer chutney to a bowl, remove muslin bag of quince skin and cool chutney at room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat a water bath to 85°C.
Use a sharp knife to trim underneath the steamer tray to loosen Haloumi. Turn Haloumi onto a chopping board and trim the edges. Halve the Haloumi and generously sprinkle both sides with coriander salt.
Use a Cryovac machine to vacuum and seal each half individually. Place sealed Haloumi into the water bath for 10 minutes. Plunge the sealed Haloumi into a bowl of iced water to cool.
For the Home Haloumi, portion Haloumi. One at a time, drizzle olive oil over each side of Haloumi, place in a cold sandwich press, close the lid and turn on. Cook Haloumi until golden and flat. Spoon ¼ cup of chutney down the centre of Haloumi and fold the two opposite sides over to cover. Serve immediately.
For the Restaurant Haloumi, puree the chutney in a small food processor until smooth. Portion Haloumi and use paper towel to pat all sides dry. Warm a little olive oil in a non-stick frypan over medium heat. Cook Haloumi for 2 minutes each side or until golden. Cut Haloumi into 2cm cubes. Place an 8cm ring mould in the centre of a serving plate. Carefully assemble Haloumi, pureed chutney, pickled shimeji mushrooms and shallots, apple rounds, pickled lemon segments and blanched lemon rind, roast pine nuts, pickled fennel seeds, celery heart and leaves, fried capers and micro herbs. Remove the ring mould and serve immediately.
Tip – Chutney will keep for up to 2 weeks. Keep chutney refrigerated and bring to room temperature before serving. Haloumi can be vacuum packed and stored in the fridge for up to 1 month.
Tip – To make Coriander Salt, place 15g coriander seeds, 15g star anise, 15g cardamom pods and 2 cinnamon quills on an oven tray and toast in the oven. Transfer spices to a spice grinder and process to a fine powder. Transfer ground spices to a small bowl and add 250g salt flakes. Mix well and store in an airtight container in the pantry for up to 3 months.