I think everyone can agree that one of the best cheeses out there is, quite simply, halloumi. I have yet to mention the word halloumi and not have every single person around me go ‘mmmmmm halloumi’ with that lustful hungry look on their face. Halloumi is great.
The downside is that, obviously, halloumi is made from milk….and milk comes from cows that are treated in terrible, terrible ways. And yes, while halloumi may be an amazing food creation, it is not worth the suffering of a living being just to get it.
Vegan cheese can be very hit and miss, so I must admit I did not have high expectations for this free from halloumi from Tesco. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy the Tesco vegan cheese options, but that’s because you either want the cheese to melt when cooked or to be creamy to spread. Halloumi is probably one of the few cheeses that you heat up so that it is hard on the outside and melty in the middle. By vegan cheese standards, that is a very hard thing to try and replicate.
Needless to say this did an alright job. It comes in a big block, and when we grilled it, the strips of cheese did hold their shape and were a pretty nice gooey consistency when you bite them. They do not, however, taste like halloumi. Unfortunately they tasted exactly how the Tesco free from cream cheese tasted. Now that isn’t a bad thing – the free from cream cheese is actually a really good alternative to the dairy – but not what you want when you are expect halloumi. It just didn’t have that salty back bite that halloumi lovers crave.
Now I don’t know if maybe next time we may try and grill it with salt added – maybe salt the pan before while grilling, or adding a bit of salt before serving – but for me it didn’t really taste any different to the other free from cheeses on offer. A cheese alternative – yes. A halloumi alternative – no.