These halloumi & watermelon skewers scream summer and plead to be tossed on the barbecue. The rich halloumi is paired with unique watermelon which takes on a delicious, caramelised flavour when lightly charred. Not much else is needed to bring out the flavour of these two simple ingredients. Hot honey helps balance the richness of the halloumi and boost the sweetness of the watermelon.
Ingredients for Halloumi & Watermelon Skewers
Halloumi is a Cypriot cheese made from a combination of goat and sheep’s milk. It has a high melting point which has helped make the cheese famous for its ability to survive at high temperatures such as when grilled or pan-fried. This ability to cook without melting has made halloumi a common meat substitute. It’s famous for another reason too, it’s squeaky nature. The nickname, squeaky cheese, refers to the texture of the cheese as it has a soft rubbery texture that “squeaks” when bitten.
Watermelon has a unique flavour made up of three different compounds. It’s sweet but with enough sour notes, to balance the sweetness. This sourness also helps manage the less pleasant bitter notes. Watermelon also has a high-water content which makes all three flavour compounds more subtle. Salt, the magical powder, helps boost the sweetness of the fruit bringing an all-around pleasant flavour sensation.
Hot honey in its simplest form is runny honey infused with spicy chilli, fresh or powdered. It’s a recent phenomenon but there are now numerous brands selling hot honey hot sauce. However, it’s simple to make and requires no more than two ingredients: honey, and chilli. Some brands do have a slight vinegary taste, which balances out the sweetness of the honey.
Despite not melting when exposed to high heat, halloumi can be a very fragile cheese. When trying to thread the cheese with a skewer it may break or crumble unless it’s cut thick enough. The problem is, if it’s cut too big, it won’t heat through while the outside begins to brown, and then char. The best size to avoid crumbly cheese, or cold skewers appears to be around 2.5cm. In imperial units, this converts to approximately an inch.
Halloumi & Watermelon Skewers with Hot Honey Drizzle
- 8 Wooden Skewers
- Griddle Pan
- 500 g Halloumi Cut into 2.5cm cubes
- 400 g Watermelon Cut into 2.5cm cubes
- Salt/ Pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- Mint Leaves to finish.
- For the Hot Honey Drizzle
- 100 ml Honey
- ½ Tsp Cayenne Pepper
- Preheat a griddle or barbecue over medium-high heat.
- Season the watermelon with a pinch of salt and pepper. Season the diced halloumi with a pinch of cracked black pepper.
- Thread the watermelon and halloumi onto the skewers, starting with watermelon, and ending with watermelon, It should make 8 skewers
- Drizzle the skewers with olive oil, and place them on the griddle or barbecue. Cook for 3-4 minutes until the skewers begin to brown, then turn. Repeat for all four sides, then remove.
- While the halloumi and watermelon skewers are cooking, make the hot honey drizzle by combining the honey and cayenne pepper. Transfer to a bottle.
- To serve, plate the skewers and drizzle with hot honey. Garnish with fresh mint leaves.