tomatoes offer a fresh, cool contrast to cubes of
and I first met at a pub. The slab of salty cheese was
battered, fried and served with mushy peas. Terribly
I learned halloumi comes from Cyprus. It’s known for
keeping its cool. Throw it on the grill or into the frying
pan, and while the outside crisps, the inside barely melts.
Not a skill shared by, say, brie.
it squeaks. In a good way. There’s something novel about
squinching into a crispy, chewy, melty cheese cube.
Especially when the crispy, chewy, melty cheese cube is
tossed with juicy tomatoes and sharp mint. The hot and cool
salad serves up fresh and refreshing. Unlike, say, mushy
ounces fresh ripe tomatoes — a mix of colors and sizes is
salt and freshly ground black pepper
cup thinly sliced fresh mint leaves
teaspoon dried oregano
teaspoon ground red pepper
teaspoon dried mustard
ounces halloumi cheese, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
Slice: Slice tomatoes for the salad. No need for uniformity.
Big tomatoes are nice sliced into circles or semicircles.
Little ones might be best halved on the diagonal. Medium
ones, quarter. Heap in a serving bowl.
Dress: Sprinkle tomatoes very lightly with salt (halloumi
tends to be salty) and generously with pepper. Drizzle on a
little oil and vinegar. Toss. Sprinkle on mint, and toss
Mix: Whisk together flour, oregano, red pepper and mustard.
Separately, whisk together egg and water, then whisk into
flour mixture. Drop in halloumi and toss to coat.
Fry: Slick a large skillet with olive oil, about 1/4-inch
deep. Heat over medium. When hot, pull cheese cubes out of
the batter and sizzle in the hot skillet. Fry, turning one
or twice, until soft inside and golden brown outside, about
5 minutes total. Drain on paper towels. Grind on some
Serve: Toss halloumi cubes into salad. Scoop onto plates,
and enjoy with flatbread.