Monday, February 13, 2006

Feta or Fetta...or white cheese in brine

If I use the EU standard then Feta can only be used to describe cheese made in certain parts of Greece, this is the result of the granting of a PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) in 2002.
White cheese in brine is a little wordy, so for this recipe I'll be applying the extra t, just to be safe.

fetta© by haalo

Marinated Fetta

1 slice of your favourite fetta cheese
assorted soft herbs
freshly ground pepper
2 garlic cloves, very finely sliced
fresh chilli, to taste, very finely sliced
good olive oil

First thing is the pat your slice of fetta cheese dry on a paper towel. Next dice into a smallish cube (maximum 1cm width) and place in a bowl.

fetta pieces© by haalo

Prepare the herbs - I like to maintain a theme with my herbs. This version will have Asian flavours so I'm using, coriander, chives, lime leaf, parsley. If I wanted a more Mediterranean feel, I'd use basil, sage, rosemary, oregano and thyme. Feel free to experiment with your favourites.

Add the sliced garlic and chillies and finely chopped herbs to the cheese. Carefully toss through. Generously grind over the top with fresh pepper, then toss again.

Pour enough olive oil (use a good oil - why sacrifice the dish and use a horrible tasting oil) until it covers the cheese. Seal the bowl with plastic wrap and place in fridge to allow the flavours to develop.

marinating fetta© by haalo

You can if you like, place the herb and cheese mix into a sterilised jar, cover with oil and seal for a more longer life product.

marinated fetta© by haalo


  1. Umm, I just made a version of this with paprika chilli, sage and basil, a few olves, garlic. I guess I missed the post somehow on your blog, but noticed it via Chef Paz, because I had a bunch of sage in my fridge and some feta I wasn't sure what I was going to do with.

    Now, how long do I have to wait for it to develop?

    It looks delicious, thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Thanks Sam - the general advice is to leave it a few days to allow the flavours to intermingle - if you make in the morning, you could eat it at night but it won't be as complex as the one left. I would try to use it up within two weeks.

    This really is the type of recipe that is highly adaptable - from choice of cheese, be it goat, sheep or cow fetta to choice of herbs and spices.

  3. a late comment, but I also do a version of this but with mostly spices - usually roughly crushed cumin, mustard, corriander, fennel seeds etc, maybe some thyme, always some lemon zest and glugs and glugs of olive oil...

    serve the drained feta as antipasto, and ALWAYS use the reserved oil to stir through pasta with lightly blanched veges, a squeeze of lemon juice and a crack of pepper later in the week! it's too good to waste! (ok, sometimes I make it just for the pasta too and toss in the fetta).

  4. Hi Zoe - it's never to late to comment! It's so important to use good oil as it absorbs all the wonderful flavours during the marination. I like to use the oil in salads and when roasting vegetables too.


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