Posts Tagged ‘appetizer’

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Baked Feta

August 29, 2015

Not too far from our home, there is an area by the water called the Sponge Docks. It’s a special place for celebrations, or to take visiting family. Fairly self explanatory in that it’s a fishing town famous for the collection of sea sponges. We love going there as it’s a cultural experiences that satisfies all the senses. Quaint little stores line the streets,some carrying souvenirs, some emanating the scent of beautiful handmade soaps, and some  filled with things imported from Greece, as the area has a heavy Greek influence. Along these streets are some of the best Greek restaurants and pastry shops. When we go one of the things we always order is the flaming feta. I tried to think of a fancy name for this baked version which includes earthy Kalamata olives, and sweet little tomatoes…but nothing came to mind that really describes this melding of flavors. You’ll just have to try it for yourself! It’s simple and quick, from start to finish shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes. A lovely appetizer, served with a crusty bread, encased in a pita or just eaten right off of your fork.. mmmm…Opa!!

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1/2 cup marinara tomato sauce, so the cheese doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan and burn,

8 oz. block of feta cheese, drained

1/2 cup pitted and chopped Kalamata olives (I used my fingers to tear the pit out, then tore them in pieces to give a rustic look)

1 1/3 C.grape or cherry tomatoes,cut in half

2 cloves garlic,grated

1 t.dried oregano

2 T. fresh basil

fresh ground pepper, to taste

Pre heat the oven to 400 Degrees. Combine your sliced tomatoes, roughly chopped olives, basil, oregano and grated garlic in a small bowl and toss to combine. Let sit while you get the feta ready.

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Pour the tomato sauce on the bottom of a 6″ or so baking dish.Turn the feta on it’s side and cut in two equal pieces. .Place the slices side by side, with a bit of space in between.(This dish merits a reason to get a special pan for next time, something smaller and square….)

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Spread the tomato mixture evenly over the feta slices.

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Top with a few twists of fresh black pepper.Bake approximately 15 minutes.

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Tear off a hunk of crusty bread and prepare to enter feta heaven…..

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Baked Avocado

April 4, 2013

Avocado is the new wonder food. The health benefits are tenfold,along with it being  a  very versatile fruit. In a typical avocado, most of the calories you receive come from monounsaturated fat. The monounsaturated fat in an avocado is healthy for you. They  contain both insoluble and soluble fiber. Very few  foods can brag about containing both kinds of fiber.  Avocados are high in  B vitamins along with vitamin K and vitamin E.  It pairs well with foods that  are  sweet or savory. You can add it to shakes, make salsas  with it, add it to salads and make chocolate mousse` with it. Baking it  with hot pepper sauce and topping with a bit of  shaved parmesean is my new favorite way to eat it. It makes a great appetizer,side or have a whole one and  call it a meal!

1 medium avocado

1-2 T. of your  favorite hot sauce (mine is Moore’s)

2 T. shaved parmesean ( I like a dry  cheese but you can use any easy melting type)

2 wedges lemon (or lime)

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Slice the avocado in half. Having  trouble  removing that   slippery pit? Holding the  avocado in one   hand, hit the  pit with the  sharp  edge of  a knife.

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Twist the knife,keeping the avocado still, and out comes the pit.

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Score the flesh of the avocado, so that the hot sauce  seeps  down in it. Fill the center of each half, with a  tablespoon or so of hot sauce.The amount is up to you but  that should be more than  enough.You don’t want it overflowing, or overpowering.

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Sprinkle the  cheese on top and add some  fresh cracked black pepper if you like.

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Bake in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes. Just enough to warm it and melt the cheese. Serve with lemon or lime wedges, to be squeezed on top right before eating.

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