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I am definately not a ram of feta cheese. I recently went on holiday to Bulgaria and there was not a hint of cheddar cheese anywhere. It was all feta this and feta that. I tried a cheese omelette one day and it was feta cheese used. Feta cheese does not melt like other cheese and the texture is strange, it is crumbly and stodgy. My husband who is a chef says that feta cheese is no good to use when making sauces because it doesn''t melt and it just makes all sauces go lumpy. Feta cheese also goes off very quickly when opened. I guess this is the same as mozzarella which goes off quickly because it is so moist. Feta cheese is used in a lot of Greek receips such as moussaka which is like a lasagne but uses lamb and aubegine instead of beef and pasta. It is also used in salads and this is the only time I really see that the texture works because salad is nice and crispy and crunchy in contract to feta that is soggy and crumbly. Feta is readily available everywhere now and it''s no longer a posh food just found in delis. It''s also fairly reasonably priced. Because it goes off so quickly it is best just to buy the amount that you are going to use straight away although it is possible to freeze feta cheese and once defrosted it us good as new again. Before freezing make sure you check the packaging though that the particular one you have is ok to do so. Generally this is fine but occasionally packaging says not to freeze.
Hmmmmmm feta -- what can I say apart from I''m not sure if there''s much better on a hot day than a Greek salad and a glass of pink! Feta is just delicious, add it to a salad and you add a whole new dimension. It has quite a salty taste, which I really love. Cut into cubes and add to your salad. Gorgeous. I''ve added it to pasta before too, that''s tasty. Reminds me of one of the best holidays I have ever been on. A wonderful cheese.......just off to the shops to buy some!
My godmother is Greek which unfortunately doesn't make me Greek but I could catch a tiny insight into the Greek culture and - at least for her more important - the Greek cuisine. If you think that it is all about the feta cheese than you are absolutely right, every single dish she ever prepared included feta cheese, more often than not it was even the main ingredients!
Don't worry it's not as unhealthy as it sounds; goat cheese is actually quite healthy and as it is normally served with olive oil, salad and bread it makes a healthy and well balanced dish.
What is Feta?
The name 'Feta' in the EU revers to cheese made in Greek from goat or sheep milk; it it is made from cow milk or in another country you find something like 'Greek style cheese' on the label.
The Feta usually comes in small blocks or thicker slices that are preserved in brine which gives it its salty taste. The cheese looks very white (the whitest cheese I've seen) and is very crumbly. But it is not dry, I'd say it's semi-firm and has no crust.
You can buy Feta in almost every super market; after opening the pack use quickly or it will get dry. If you cannot use it in once pour some olive oil in the pack to keep it from drying out.
The taste is rather surprising when you compare it to the cheese we in the UK are used to. Firstly, the consistency is totally different, it's very crumbly when you cut or eat it. The taste is quite strong, you can definitely taste that it's not made from cow milk and it's quite salty. I love it but if you don't like the saltines wash it under running cold water for a while to get rid of all the brine.
My favourite Feta recipe is 'baked Feta'; a simple and quick way to provide your guests with a delicious quick treat. It's beat eaten as a starter with Greek bread, a whole loaf of fresh and crusty bread, and a mixed salad with onion, tomato and olives.
My Greek godmother used to prepare this every time she came over and we had a BBQ in summer - a glass of dark, red wine was always in her hand while cooking this delicious treat.
You can choose some of the ingredients according to your taste, eg you can use green olives instead of black ones or add tomato etc
* 6 Slices of Feta cheese
* Premium Extra Vergine Olive Oil
* 2 Onions, chopped in thin Slices
* 4 Cloves of Garlic, peeled and crushed
* 2 Handful of Black Olives, in thin Slices
* Fresh Oregano, Rosemary, Marjoram and Thyme
* 1 Lemon, quartered
It's really simple to make and doesn't take long at all. Put 1 1/2 slices of feta cheese in a small heat resisting casserole dish, pour a little bit of olive oil underneath the cheese so it won't stick to it later. Crush the garlic with a garlic crusher and mix it with the onion slices and a bit of oil; now put the slices on top of the feta cheese; it's better to have very thin slices as they'll fry better than thick pieces.
Chop the olives and put them on top of the cheese/onion mix. In another bowl mix a lot of olive oil with the herbs; these are the herbs we usually used but when one is not available you can leave it away or substitute according to your taste. I prefer fresh herbs but if you don't have a vegetable garden you can of course use dried herbs as well. I even saw in some supermarkets a 'Greek-style' herb mix but I've never tried it so I cannot really recommend it.
Anyway, pour the olive oil over the cheese; I'd pour so much oil in the dishes that it's at least 1/2 centimeter high. Don't worry, you can later take the cheese out and don't have to eat all the oil.
Close the casseroles with tinfoil and bake on medium heat for about 30 minutes. 5 min before they are ready take the foil off to create a nice crust.
Serve immediately with bread and salad and your guests/family will love you for this delicious dish!
Feta is a Greek cheese made with either sheep's or a mixture of sheep's and goat's milk. It's white , firm, and sometimes a little crumbly due to it having a few small holes in it, making it delicate . It has small holes because it's a curd cheese, made by compacting the curds together. The compacted cheese in then soaked in brine for up to a month, which give it a salty taste with a mild acidic tang. It is produced in large blocks, which is why , when you buy a cut down piece its always square.
Now, I've read a couple of reviews on here stating that Feta can be made from cows milk. This is NOT the case - in 2002 Feta became a protected name, and only cheeses made IN Greece, using milk from a small selection of goat and sheep breeds, may be called Feta within the EU. If you look closely at the packaging for brands like Apetina, which used to be labelled as Feta , you'll see they are now labelled as Greek Style Cheese, or Salad Cheese.
You can get real feta in most large supermarkets though, so don't worry. Although the mock feta is still pretty tasty, I prefer to buy the real stuff as many of the mock fetas are artificially whitened (due to cows milk having a tendency to go yellow after a while.)
On its own, its salty, creamy, and with a slight acidic tang . Its great mixed in with a handful of olives and sun dried tomatoes, or with a fresh and crispy salad. I've included one of my favourites recipes here. I didn't come up with it myself (Its out of one of my Delia Smith books) but I have used it a lot, and adapted it slightly ,and the scones are delicious still warm with a little butter and a couple of slices of thinly sliced chorizo.
Feta and Olive Scones
3oz feta, cut into small cubes
10 black olives, pitted and chopped
2oz sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped (reserve 1 tbsp oil)
8oz self raising flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon mustard powder
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 level teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
2 tablespoons of milk (plus a little extra for washing)
Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.
Sieve the flour and baking powder into a large bowl, then add the cayenne pepper and mustard powder . Slowly add in the olive oil, plus the reserved oil from the sun dried tomatoes (this oil is full of herbs and tastes brilliant) and mix until it looks like lumpy breadcrumbs . Now add in the thyme, feta, olives and tomatoes .
Beat the egg and milk together, and add half of this to the mixture, using your hands to mix it into a dough, slowly adding the rest of the mixture . It should be soft but not sticky - if it is sticky, add a little extra flour, a tiny bit at a time .
On a floured surfaces, roll the dough out to one inch thickness, and using a scone cutter, cut into rounds . Put the rounds onto a greased and lightly floured baking tray, and brush the tops of the scones with a little milk .
Stick them in the oven for 10-15 minutes until the tops are a light golden colour, allow to cool, and then eat , either on their own with butter, or perhaps filled with some griddled Halloumi cheese or some continental meats.
Overall, I do like Feta - although its saltiness and high fat content make it something I only eat occasionally as a treat . One disadvantage of Feta is that , with it being a brine soaked cheese it can tend to dry out after a while . What I tend to do if I have feta that I'm not going to use quickly is shove it into a partly used jar of sun dried tomatoes, which keeps it fresh and imbues it with a lovely herby flavour. Definitely a cheese to try, especially in summer, as its the perfect time to sprinkle a few cubes onto your salad .
Being a cheese lover, I recently decided to try Feta Cheese. This cheese is soooo tasty!
The cheese itself is full fat and is quite soft in texsture. It is made from pasteurised cows milk which is matured.
Feta Cheese can be found in all supermarkets and usually is quite cheap! I purchased a 200g block for only a pound the other day in my local supermarket.
I tend to eat my cheese in small squared and add them to a salad however it is so tasty you could eat it by the block!
The cheese I purchase is called Patros and contains 20% fat so if you are watching your figure I would definately stay away from this one.
The cheese is white in colour and is quite soft it tastes like cottage cheese and has a little bit of a salty taste!!
Yum Yum, I could just eat it now!!
As my hubby returned from Greece early on this year it reminded me that I needed to add Feta Cheese to my shopping list as we where on the last of it and this is sonething we eat fairly often in my house.
Firstly for those of you who may not know, what is Feta Cheese, Feta is a cheese made from curd and brine and is the most type of cheese in Greece, the origin of this cheese dates back thousands of year to the shepherds who used to make it from pasteurized sheeps milk and it is still often made this way in Greece today. The type of Feta that is exported for sale overseas is quite often found to be made from a mixture of ewe and goat milk which is why it does not taste the same when you come back from you holiday in Greece, its not just the fact that you are no longer eating out in a warmer environment and more relaxed it is made differently. For those of you who have an allergy to cows milk beware, check the ingredients as more and more Feta is being produced using cows milk.
Now to look at the block of Feta I recently bought and also as we had this for tea in a salad last night, however, back to the important bits. My Feta was bought in Asda, who do offer many different makes and varieties but I have stuck with their own label recently. The size of the block of feta does not seem to differ much from brand to brand and you may find that only the price / quality is the main difference for the same amount of cheese. I block I purchased is approx 10cm x 5cm in size and comes in a white plastic packet and I cant see what the cheese looks like from the outside like most other varieties of cheese you can buy where you can see the colour and texture whilst it is still on the shelf.
Opening the cheese I find that it is slightly wet, this must be brine residue left over from the manufacturing process and upon smelling the block this is confirmed with that slightly salty aroma to the cheese. The texture, my cheese does look as though it will crumble very easily and just to confirm that this is the case I brake a bit off the corner using my fingers (yes they are clean) and find that the cheese does crumble slightly but does not fall apart completely. I should add that my cheese is completely white coloured in appearance
What does it taste like, well for those of you with a sweet tooth then this is not the cheese for you as it does verge towards the sour end of the scale as cheese goes and it maybe and acquired taste for some, personally I love the taste and could quite easily sit and eat it on its own as a small snack. There is also a slightly salty taste lingering after you have swallowed so I would recommend a nice drink as an accompaniment if you find that salty food makes you thirsty.
What can I do with my Feta Cheese?
Well as above eat it on its own or you could opt for the safe option of a greek salad which is simple to make, however, I prefer it with sliced tomatoes, my feta cut into good sized chunks sprinkled with olive oil and a few fresh herbs, lovely when the weather is nice and you can eat outside. Below are some other ideas including what my hubby had for breakfast on Wednesday in Athens.
Greek salad the easiest one I think
Olive Oil extra virgin is the best but whatever you have handy will do
Red wine vinegar (optional)
Jules method, roughly chop ingredients and throw into a nice salad bowl amounts well that really depends on how many you are making it for and you personal taste, some people may like more olives than onion go with what you fancy I say. Drizzle oil and vinegar over the top of your salad, quick toss and you are done.
I use Feta with any salad ingredients that I have in the fridge so you can alter it to your personal choice, I add carrot, radish, sweetcorn and really whatever is in the fridge if I am making this to take to work for lunch.
What hubby had for breakfast - apparently my version is not quite as good as what he had in Greece but hey Mersyside is not Greece and its cold and wet.
Greek breakfast omelette
2 Eggs-of course its and omelette
Sausage (he is not sure what type of sausage it was but go with what you like here, spicy, plain pork or herb would do fine)
Chop the bacon, Sausage, Onion and Feta Keep feta to one side for later.
Beat the eggs really well
Place the onion and sausage in the pan and fry until just about cooked, add the bacon this cooks quicker than the sausage. Add the eggs and keep on heat until just cooked but still a bit wet on the top, for me I have my grill pre-heated for the final bit of cooking sprinkle on the Feta cheese and place pan under hot grill until the top of your omelette is cooked. Quickly transfer to a plate and serve I have found that by finishing off your omelette under the grill it rises beautifully and gives that light and fully texture rather than the sad flat bit of egg you sometimes end up with.
Im off to sneak a bit off the other packet of Feta I have in my fridge which also contains black olives and more salty than the plain variety.
Feta is the very well known cheese that is mainly produced in Greece. It is made using ewe and goat milk with a consistency of about 65-35%. It is also produced in France and Germany, but the original taste can only be found in the Greek feta cheese. Once across it, you will be amased by its whiteness! I do not know why but that was the first thing that struck me. As far as its texture, you should close your eyes and try to taste or feel the munchiness and crumblessness (is there such a word!) of this cheese. I have found it in a lot of supermarkets in the UK. As an example I have found it to be selling at £9.95/kgr, which I reckon isn't so expensive for such a delicacy. If you have visited or have friends that have visited Greece, the first thing that you will hear from them is greek salad. Well, surprise surprise, feta cheese is one of the main ingredients of this kind of salad. There a lot of other ways to cook with it. What must be taken under consideration, is that feta cheese is quite a salty cheese containing around 50% of fat. This varies a lot if bought in Greece depending on the region (it can reach up to 75%), so check prior to purchase. Now, what good is it to buy a more expensive cheese than your usual cheddar, if you do not where to use it for cooking? Some ideas are shown below. Good luck with them! Greek salad: the original consists of tomatoes, sliced onions, peppers, olives and feta cheese with a drip of olive oil - "alternative" -> feta cheese with olive oil in a bed of lettuce leaves Stuffed peppers: thinly slice some tomatoes and mix them with feta cheese (according to your taste) until made to a mix. Then cut the top of the peppers (prefer the green ones for a variety of colour of the end meal) and place the mix in them. Place them in the oven (150C) until the pepper is soft. Take care not to burn them. You will see that the feta cheese when melt, it has a
magnificent texture that will surprise you. All in all feta cheese is a good solution when your cooking contains some kind of cheese. In most of those cases, you can replace whatever cheese you are using with feta. It also tastes nice on top of past! Just try it! ************************* Here's a quicky recepie needing only extra virgin olive oil, some pasta (preferably spagetti and some feta cheese). Boil the pasta to your liking and dress them with the olive oil. For about 200g of pasta you should dress them in about 1.5 teaspoons of olive oil. Use good quality olive oil in order not to be left with a "greasy" taste. After coating the pasta crumble some feta cheese on top and voila! C'est pres!
Fèted by moomins everywhere, and certainly not fetid (groan) this crumbly cheese is a regular inhabitant of my fridge, and lives happily alongside the Halloumi and the Stilton! Feta is considered the national cheese of Greece, although it is also made in other parts of the world. It was originally made only from goats/sheep's milk but nowadays cow's milk is often used. This cheese is not cooked or pressed, but briefly cured in a salty solution which gives it is characteristic taste. Its texture is semi-soft and crumbly, and it is a brilliant white. Taste? I would describe it as sharp and salty. It does not have a 'cheesey' flavour like cheddar or red Leicester, and the texture is unique - it melts in the mouth. What do you do with it? Feta can be used in many ways, probably the most well-known is cubed, drizzled with olive oil and tossed in salads. It is lovely crumbled over a jacket potato, or into cous-cous. It can be served with fruits or fruit salad, and is the perfect partner to good olives. Or, in true moomin fashion, you can eat it on its own! In great big chunks! (drool) So where can you get it? Well, I have done some research in my local Sainsbury's especially for dooyoo, and here are the results: Greek Organic Feta - 200g - £2.29 This is a new product in my store, so I have not yet tasted it. Its on my list though. I predict that it is lovely! French Feta - 200g - £2.09 I have tried this one, but found it rather bland compared to the others, so I don't buy it. Greek Feta - 200g - £1.99 This is very nice, with a fine flavour but for some reason isn't always in stock. SO themoomin ENDORSES . . . . . (drum roll) . . . . . Cyprus Feta - 200g - £1.89 The maker is PITTAS (they also make the best Halloumi), the texture and flavour are unsurpassable, and this cheese disappears very quickly in the moomin house. Also it?s the chea
pest, so good news all round! Sainsbury's also do little 'snack-packs' of feta with olives in olive oil and herbs for 99p. These can be found alongside the feta in the continental cheese section. I haven't tried these though, as I prefer to buy a tub of the 'mixed olives with feta cheese' from the deli counter, which is absolutely delicious! So there you have it. Feta cheese. If you decide to try some, I recommend that once opened you take it out of the plastic and store it in an airtight container in the fridge. It may well 'weep' a little, but this is due to the brine and is perfectly natural. It will keep for at least a week this way, if you can resist it that long! A spot of trivia - in Homer's 'Odyssey', a cyclops by the name of Polyphemus made cheese from sheep's milk, and ripened it in his cave. Was this the ancient ancestor of the Feta produced in Greece today?? People are looking at me strangely. Oh dear, I seem to be salivating . . . aarrrrgh! See what you doo too me, dooyoo?!