Friday, May 18, 2007

Moi et Ma Feta / Me and My Feta

Every two or three weeks it’s the same ritual. I go to the market to buy some feta: arrive at the deli, take my number and wait.
Yes, right here!
How can I help you?
I would like some Bulgarian feta, please
How much?
Hmmm! One pound

Anything else?
No, that’s it. Thank you.
You’re welcome. Have a great day!
Thanks, you too


I then go back home and ask my self: “Why did I buy it again?”
I will probably start making some salad, usually a Greek salad with some feta on top or for a change I will use it with orzo pasta and shrimp or in a savory tart with some herbs and vegetables. But, as much as I love feta cheese and as much as my inspiration goes I just get bored sometimes with this same plain feta taste that I get again and again. Whether I use it to compliment a salad or a savory dish, it always leaves this same salty, goat cheese taste in my mouth.
By the time I finish my pound of feta, part of it would go bad spending most of its time lonely in the fridge.
A few weeks later, it’s back again.
Market. Deli.
Help you?
Feta. Please.
No. Thanks.
Good day!
You too.

Go back. Think. Salad? Quiche? Salad? Fridge? Bad!
Same old, same old.

Then one day it happened. The magic of the Internet and hours spent browsing other people food blogs have finally paid off.
I have found the solution. Or the solution has found me? Anyway, we have found each other at Haalo’s blog. If you don’t know Haalo yet, which I doubt, then you should take a glimpse at her original recipes and mouthwatering pictures. In her post she marinated the feta cheese with a variety of herbs and some “good olive oil” and then store it in the fridge for days to let the flavor develop.
I basically did the same except for the use of some herbs and some lemon zest in mine. I used Bulgarian feta cheese but you can use whatever feta cheese you like. If you like the taste of goat cheese then you won’t be disappointed with Bulgarian feta. My only advice, and it is my personal experience, is to avoid cow’s milk feta cheese because the best feta is the one made with sheep or goat milk. The recipe doesn’t have the exact amount of herbs because, again it is everyone taste whether you like to add some herbs more than others. Feel free to experiment with this versatile marinade and to use it in salads or just as a dip with a slice of your favorite bread. I know my next trip to the deli will be more exciting this time because I know exactly what I am going to do with my flavorful feta.

Marinated Feta:

- 1 pound of Bulgarian feta
- Parsley
- Chives
- Mint
- Rosemary
- Garlic
- Coriander seeds
- Fresh chili, finely diced
- 2 zest strips of a lemon
- Ground black pepper
- Good extra virgin olive oil

Pat the pound of feta dry on a paper towel. Carefully dice it in small cubes and place it in a bowl with the chili, the coriander seeds and the lemon zests. Chop the herbs and the garlic and add them to the bowl of feta. Toss gently with your fingers to avoid crumbling the cheese. Season with freshly ground pepper and toss again. Put it in a jar and add the olive oil until it all covers the feta. Seal and refrigerate. Prior to use it, put the jar of feta at room temperature until the olive oil is liquid again.

Feta Marinee:

In francais please:
- 500g de feta bulgarienne
- Persil
- Ciboulette
- Menthe
- Romarin
- Ail
- Graines de coriandre
- Piment rouge, Cisele
- 2 zest d’un citron
- Poivre noir
- De l’huile d’olive de bonne qualite

Avant toute chose, Faites secher votre feta delicatement avec du papier et la couper en petits des. Mettre la feta dans un bol avec le piment rouge, les graines de coriander et le zest de citron. Hacher les herbes et l’ail finement et les ajouter au bol de feta. Melanger delicatement en utilisant vos doigts. Assaisoner avec le poivre et melanger encore. Mettre dans un bocale a fermeture hermetique et recouvrir completement d’huile d’olive. Mettre au frais pendant des jours avant de le consomer. Avant de le deguster, Sortir votre bocal de feta et laisser-le a temperature ambiante jusqu’a ce que l’huile d’olive redevienne liquide.


Deborah said...

Wow - this sounds fantastic. I can just taste it now - looks like I'll be stopping at the deli counter!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Funny how we get stuck on one ingredient and then can use it all before it's gone bad.

Lis said...

Oh man.. that sounds and looks delicious! Those pictures are gorgeous, Rose =)


Lucy said...

Beautiful photos. I'm a sucker for feta too and I've somehow never managed to get around to marinating it.

This recipe may just change that...

Nora B. said...

Rose, that looks wonderful. I would like to try that. It would be sooo much better than the store-bought marinated ones.

Lisa Johnson said...

Great idea! I'm a feta fan too, but I usually buy it with the herbs already in it. It would be nice to make my own!

Elle said...

Thank you! I've always enjoyed marinated feta, just never tried to make it. You have inspired me to try it. Love the addition of the lemon zest!
Beautiful photos, too.

LILIBOX said...

comme cela doit etre bon !

Warda said...

- Thanks Beborah.Try it,You will love it.
- And believe me Tanna, this is not the only ingredient I get stuck with.
- You are so nice Lis Thank you very much.
- Well, try marinating feta, Lucy and you wil never wanna eat it plain again.
- Nora, not only this is better than the store bought one but you can also play with the marinade as much as your imagination goes.
- Thanks Anali. This is so easy and so quick to make too.
- Thank you very much Elle. I am happy to hear that my feta inspired you to start making your own marinade.
- Je te le confirme Lili, c'est delicieux et tellement frais. Ideal pour un dejeuner leger sous le soleil de Paris.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Rose, food bloggers are the most reliable source for recipes in my opinion. They'll give you great recipes, photos (so you know what your dish is supposed to look like) and their opinion, whether the food is good or not. Haalo is one of my favorite foodies and her recipes haven't disappointed me so far.

Your feta looks delicious and I love it that you added zest. I can almost feel the zing just by looking at your photos! :)

catalyst0527 said...

I used to eat peta cheese in Korea.
However, I don't know it was a 'real' peta cheese! :)

I want to buy and eat the cheese on my way home today.

Thank you for great picture, great post! :)

catalyst0527 said...

I want to add your blog into my 'Great Cooking Blogs' link.

Do you mind if I put your blog on my list? :)

Warda said...

- Thank you very much Patricia. The lemon zest sure does give a fresh touch to the marinade. Not only Haalo recipe's are always a succes in my kitchen but she is also a very sweet person.
- I am glad you like the feta recipe Catalyst. Try it and let me know how it goes. I am very touched that you want to add me to your blog list. Thanks.

catalyst0527 said...

I put your blog on my link list.
I'll try peta cheese on my way home today and let you know how it goes. :)
Have a good day~

Kelly-Jane said...

I like marinated feta too, and your looks so pretty in the glass holder :)

Warda said...

- I can't wait to see how it went for you Catalyst.Have a great day.
- Thank you Kelly-jane. The glass holder is my favorite, a gift from my mother.