Saturday, 8 April 2017


When you're living with a (mostly) vegetarian person it can be quite difficult sometimes to make meals were you can enjoy a bit of meat whilst being able to make a meat free version to satisfy the veggies as well. You may of seen my recipe recently for Boozy Thai Red Curry Fried Chicken I posted on here earlier in the month but here is a vegetarian version I made using 8 batons of halloumi. It works just as well as my chicken drumstick version and more importantly, is equally as fragrant, spicy and tasty!

So let me give you some similar advice to what I gave you in the Boozy Thai Red Curry Fried Chicken recipe beginning with the batter. I think the recipe for this is spot on so I advise you not to make changes other than saying that if don't drink alcohol then you can just add in some extra sparkling water until you get that batter consistency correct. Definitely make sure you use sparkling water as well, something about the bubbles really makes the batter crispy! 

What's the soaking of the halloumi all about? Don't skip this bit as it prevents the halloumi from becoming all tough and squeaky once it's been fried. If you can't find buttermilk you can use 250ml of creme fraice with the juice of a lemon squeezed into it instead.

As for the sauce, I like my spice so I added a lot of sriracha to the sauce to give the hot sauce (I used Frank's BTW!) a boost but I've left this as an optional addition to the recipe in case you don't like the heat that much. You can replace the Thai red curry paste with Gochujang paste if you want to make some Korean style fried halloumi, it's a very adaptable recipe! Now you may worry about there being fish sauce in these pastes but if you hunt around in your local vegetarian and world stores you can find vegetarian and even vegan curry pastes so don't panic! 

Onto the recipe! Remember to be careful when heating up oil and make sure there are no kids or animals about and that you have a damp tea towel to hand in case it does go off. Invest in a cooking thermometer so you can measure the temperature accurately but if you can't you can roughly tell when your at the right temperate by chucking in a few few breadcrumbs. If they fizz and brown near enough instantly then you are at around 180 degrees!

Boozy Thai Red Curry Fried Halloumi

250g Block Of Halloumi
250ml Buttermilk
160g Plain Flour
40g Cornflour
1 Tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Tsp Salt
100ml Vodka
100ml Sparkling Water
2 Tbsp Thai Red Curry Paste
1 Tbsp Hot Sauce
1 Tsp White Wine Vinegar
1 Tbsp Honey
1 Tsp Sesame Oil
Few Drops Of Sriracha (To Taste)

  1. Begin by cutting your block of halloumi into 8 equal sized batons and placing in a bowl before covering in them in the buttermilk. Cover with film and leave to soak for at least 2 hours.
  2. Once the halloumi has soaked, take a plate and mix together 35g plain flour, 15g cornflour, 1/2 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt. Leave the plate to one side.
  3. In a large bowl, add in the remaining plain flour, corn flour and baking powder along with the vodka and whisk everything together whilst you slowly add in the sparkling water, continuing to whisk until a batter has formed that is runny but can coat the back of a spoon (you may not need all the sparkling water for this). Leave the bowl to one side. 
  4. Fill up a large pan with oil so that it's roughly 2 inches deep and then carefully heat the oil to 180 degrees.
  5. Whilst the oil heats up, take the Thai red curry paste, hot sauce, white wine vinegar, honey and sesame oil and stir everything together to form a sauce. Taste and if you think it needs a bit more spice then add a few drops of Sriracha (I did!), Leave to one side.
  6. When the oil is at the right temperature, remove the halloumi batons one by one and allow any excess buttermilk to dip off them . Dip each of the batons in the dry flour mixture so they are fully coated and then dip each baton into the wet vodka batter mix. Allow any excess to drip off and then carefully place the batons into the hot oil (you may need to do this in batches if you can't fit all the halloumi in your pan at the same time). 
  7. Fry the halloumi for 8-10 minutes until the batter is golden brown and then remove and place on a wire rack to drain. Brush them with a little bit of the Thai red curry sauce to finish.
Now it's imperative that you serve your halloumi as quickly as possible so that the batter stays super crispy and that halloumi is nice and soft and gooey. Don't brush too much of that sauce on either or your batter will go soggy and garnish with sliced chili if you want even more spice. You just want a light coating of sauce so you get some of that delicious Thai flavoring and then you can use the rest of your sauce for a quick dip before you fling the batons into your mouth. That crispy vodka laced batter is perfect alongside the fragrant and spicy sauce and both are great flavor injectors for the soft halloumi. A brilliant boozy treat for any veggie!

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