Black Sea fondue with hellim loaf

Selin Kiazim's fondue and hellim loaf makes a fantastic starter if you're catering for a larger number of people at a dinner party. The freshly-baked bread is laced with cubes of tender halloumi, perfect for scraping through the soft fondue, made with stringy Turkish cheese, mozzarella and polenta. In fact, we'd happily make the bread on it's own any time of the week, just to snack on!

First published in 2019





Hellim loaf

  • 1kg plain flour
  • 7g of dried yeast
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 1/2 tsp caster sugar
  • 400ml of water
  • 125ml of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 200g of halloumi, diced into 1cm cubes
  • 1 tbsp of dried mint

To assemble


Start by making the hellim loaf – mix together the plain flour, yeast, salt and sugar. Add in the water and olive oil and mix to form a thick batter
  • 1kg plain flour
  • 7g of dried yeast
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 1/2 tsp caster sugar
  • 400ml of water
  • 125ml of extra virgin olive oil
Add in all the remaining ingredients and knead well. Place into a pre-oiled tray, about 20 x 20cm in size, cover with a damp cloth and leave to prove in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size (approximately 30-60 minutes)
Preheat the oven to 190ºC fan, or 210ºC conventional
To make your brown butter cubes, melt 250 grams of unsalted butter in a pan a cook until it turns nut brown and fragrant. Once it reaches this point, strain the butter and set in a pot in the fridge. Once set, dice the brown butter into small cubes and reserve for later
Once your bread has proved, bake in the oven for 35-50 minutes until the outside is golden brown. Insert a skewer into the loaf to check – if it comes out clean then the loaf is ready. Remove from the oven and allow to cool
Meanwhile, prepare your polenta – melt the butter in a large pan, then add the polenta and cook until nut brown and fragrant
Add the water and milk to the pan, bring to a simmer and whisk the polenta often until cooked through and smooth
  • 625ml of whole milk
  • 625ml of water
Finish the polenta with the tulum cheese, check for seasoning then allow to cool
When your polenta and bread are cool and you're ready to assemble, divide up your cheeses and cubes of brown butter between your serving dishes. Spoon over the polenta and level out to make a flat top. Place under a preheated grill and cook for 5-10 minutes until the top is caramelised and bubbling
To finish, drizzle over a little honey and scatter some parsley and crushed nigella seeds over the top. Serve warm with the hellim loaf
First published in 2019

At Oklava, Selin Kiazim expertly navigates Turkey's diverse culinary landscape, drawing on her own Turkish Cypriot heritage to create delicious dishes that are bursting with flavour.

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