Posts Tagged ‘Greek’

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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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Greek Lemon Potatoes

November 2, 2010

There’s a beautiful little fishing town near us called Tarpon Springs.Primarily Greek in population, this is the place to go for authentic Greek cooking.Good Greek food gives me foodgasms.I can’t say that I have ever tasted anything Greek that I dont at least “like”.On our last trip we tried these potatoes.This was my first time making them.They are a little darker than the ones at the restaurant but every bit as good.

  • 4 large potatoes,any waxy type which means no Idahos
  • 1/2 C. olive oil
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 t. dried oregano
  • 1/2 C. vegetable stock
  • 1/3 C. FRESH lemon juice w/ some of the pulp,plus 2 extra tablespoons
  • salt & pepper to taste
Because you are using a thin skinned potato there is no real need to peel them.In the restaurant they were completely peeled. I like the look of partial peeling.It allows for better absorption of the juices than not peeling at all.
Pre heat your oven to 400.Cut the potatoes in eighths.Place them in a 13×9 roasting pan.Pour the oil over them plus 1 T. lemon juice.Toss to coat.Add the garlic,oregano,a few shakes of salt and a little pepper.Toss well. (I use my hands,one of your best kitchen tools) Arrange in a single layer.Bake for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and drop the temperature to 325.Reserving 1 T. of lemon juice,pour lemon juice OVER the potatoes.Next, pour the stock in the corner of the pan.allowing it to spread across the bottom.Don’t pour the stock over the potatoes.This is important!!! Bake for 45 more minutes.
Remove from oven.We like them as is, but many like them crisp-if so put them under the broiler for a minute or two but watch them carefully.Sprinkle that last tablespoon of lemon juice over the potatoes and serve.Don’t forget to scape those little bits from the bottom of the pan.There is alot of flavor in them.