07 May 2013

Baked Feta

I'm popping in for a quick hello today in lieu of a Monday mashup (um and yes, I know it's Tuesday) and sharing a recipe. I hope you'll find it a fitting alterna-plan : )

On the feta. I'm going to, perhaps state the obvious: you should bake feta. It's my new obsession and here's why: Pretty much anything roasted at 425 degrees in the oven with a bit of oil turns to gold, right? The same is true with this cheese. A crumbly and zesty topper/accomplice (yes, feta is a total accomplice to things that need tang, salt and bite, isn't it?) is transformed into a strong stunner in itself when it emerges from the oven a little dressed up like this.

The recipe I'll share today couldn't be simpler. Perhaps you've walked in the door in yoga clothes and want lunch prepared (for you?) while you rinse off or come home from a long day and want to put a side dish on the table while you figure out the rest of a meal. But actually, toast some crusty bread (I picked up a local loaf at Gourmet Garage yesterday, who was having a special) and dress some greens and you've got yourself a lunch or substantial dinner side.

A few things here. You can dress up your cheese however you want. Deb at Smitten has done a version with halved cherry tomatoes. But here I am keeping it simple with black olives and lemon zest. I pepper in a bit of basil at the end for an herby note.

And on another note: I've noticed that it doesn't quite matter the thickness of the cut of your cheese, just check after 10 minutes, and be sure to let it cool a few minutes before eating.

Baked Feta

Hunk of feta
4-5 olives kalmata, chopped
Olive oil for drizzling
Zest of 1/4 to 1/2 a lemon + squeeze of juice
Herbs of choice (I used basil, torn)

Bread for accompaniment 

Oven to 425
Set a hunk of feta, or slice a few pieces and place, in an oven-safe baking dish. Drizzle with oil, olives, zest, torn herbs, and bake for 15-20 minutes. Top with a drizzle lemon juice and rest of herbs. Let cool a few moments and enjoy with bread.

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