Marinated Feta Cheese

 

Raise your hand if your weekly grocery run involves more than a few stops.  For me, it’s Sigona’s for produce, Robert’s for meat, Trader Joe’s for some favorite items and Safeway for other things.  This doesn’t include the stops at the Asian market and the Latin market when the pantry is running low on staples.  And let’s not forget Target where I can easily spend an afternoon just browsing the aisles.  Admittedly, I sometimes take a shortcut and skip one or two of the stores, foregoing some items on my list just to make shopping a bit easier but there are some items my husband and I can’t go without.  For me it’s Barry’s Irish black tea that is sold at Draeger’s and for my husband it’s Pavel’s yogurt, coffee from Peet’s, Acme baguettes (3x/week) from Robert’s or Whole Foods and these days, French feta, also from Robert’s.

 

 

Last week was a busy one and I was feeling under the weather so I took one of those aforementioned shortcuts.  I forgot to pick up a block of our favorite feta and I had already been to Robert’s so I grabbed one I was unfamiliar with and promptly regretted it as soon as I got home.  The cow’s milk feta I bought was saltier and more pungent than the milder, creamier sheep’s milk variety we’ve grown accustomed to.  My husband cut a chunk of it for a spinach salad but when I noticed most of it still uneaten by the end of the week, I knew I’d have to figure out what to do with it or the cheese would end up going to waste.

As with most foods that need rescuing taste-wise, the feta improved with the help of lemon, olive oil and herbs.  I cut the cheese in cubes, marinated it in the lemon/olive oil/herb mixture for a few hours et voilà! The marinade mellowed the overpowering qualities of the feta and benefitted from the addition of herbs and hint of spice.  Even my husband who flatly rejected the cheese at first taste a week ago changed his tune after tasting the marinated version this afternoon.  “I could eat a whole bowl of this,” he said.

A few hours in the refrigerator did the trick but I would imagine that marinating the cheese longer would be even better.  The bowl of cheese, which my husband was generous to share with me, ended up the highlight of this afternoon’s wine o’clock menu.

 

 

5.0 from 6 reviews
Marinated Feta Cheese
 
This appetizer takes five minutes to put together; it's perfect for a dinner party.
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Ingredients
  • 6-8 ounces feta cheese, cubed
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon Herbs de Provence
  • 1 or two dried chilies (or you can use chili flakes, to taste)
Instructions
  1. Whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice in a bowl until emulsified then stir in the lemon zest, herbs and chilies. Add the cubed feta and toss until all the pieces are covered in the marinade. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

 

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Comments

  1. Yum, love this. I too make my rounds at different stores, there ae some things we can’t live without! Beautiful photos too.

  2. I tend to keep it to one store or one market. But it’s difficult for me to move around as I don’t have a car :)

    Interesting that you post this recipe this week as we’ve been learning about feta in my history of cuisine class, and I’ve never been a huge fan of feta, but now that I have some new respect for the cheese I want to give it another try. I’ll have to give this a shot.

    Also, those crackers look amazing. Are they homemade?

    • lemonsandanchovies says:

      Hi, Holly. I wouldn’t be able to manage without a car–it would be one stop, two at the most, if that were the case. Even with transportation it’s sometimes a pain making all those stops. The things we do to satisfy our taste buds, right? :)

      I’d be interested to learn more about feta. I’ve heard that on Greek feta should be called such but you know, I really like the French kind. :)

      These crackers are my favorite–not homemade–though I’ve tried my own black pepper crackers (recipe in the archives). :)

  3. I’ve also run into feta that’s been far too salty to enjoy (is that a trademark of cow’s milk I wonder?). I’m so excited to try this rescue recipe! Lemons are such wonderful little gems. :)

    • lemonsandanchovies says:

      Valerie, I think you’re right about that. The cow’s milk feta I’ve tried at least have all been too salty. This turned out to be a good way to save the block I bought. Yes, lemons are awesome! :)

  4. This is just what I wanted to do yesterday for a party. Next time.

  5. Jean – you sound like me! I tend to run to several stores to gather all my favorites – from Trader Joes, wholefoods, safeway to the smaller specialty markets. Wish everything was all in one place but that would be too easy! Love this little bite you created. I wish I was there enjoying those delightful nibbles and lovely wine! Stunning photos!!

  6. That’s a funny coincidence on our two posts. I am raising my hand about shopping (and feta). GREG

  7. Oh my goodness, this marinated feta cheese made me go weak in the knees! It’s delicious! I love your photos, they’re so gorgeous! Thanks for sharing this recipe idea, Jean! And take it easy ~ just roll with it and everything will be okay. Have a fantastic week ahead!

  8. I go to different shops too to buy staples when time permits. Some food are just better in scattered places! I’m glad you were able to rescue the feta.

  9. Gorgeous photos, Jean! What a perfect appetizer!

  10. Sounds glorious, Jean! What a perfect wine o’clock menu!

  11. Raising my hand about shopping at various stores – it gets complicated when you desire the best and develop favorites where substitutions are frowned upon! Great idea for transforming a mistake into a new favorite :) Absolutely love the props you used here, Jean.

  12. I’m guilty of stopping at way too many places. I like your save for the cheese, plus I was noticing those tasty crackers in the background. Those were so good and I may have to add another stop on my route just to get those. Love the photos, trying to get back into a routine, but feel like I’ve falling off the blogging wagon. Hope you are doing great.
    -Gina-

  13. My husband does our shopping each night according to what I write on the list. I don’t really know where he goes as that is his job. Then I cook.
    There are certainly varying qualities and flavours of feta. I like it milder and creamy too.

  14. I have never tried marinated feta cheese before and I’m looking forward to try. It sounds delicious! I do have a routine as I have to do these errands before picking up kid #2. My mornings are usually spent on several stores throughout the week. I have a feeling one of these days I’ll run into you at a store. I’ll surprise you! :D

  15. I shop at different places for different ingredients. I like my feta mild and love to add marinated ones to my lettuce and walnut salad. Such gorgeous pictures. Loved it.

  16. Oh my goodness!! What a treat!! We had marinated Feta in Italy last summer and I absolutely adored it. Never thought to make it myself though, but why not? Genius!!

  17. First off I have to say your photos are so pretty-love the colors and all the interesting things you’ve put together with your marinated feta cheese! I’m all over the place when I shop but I love the cheese counter at Whole Foods and the friendly lady who helps at the counter, she recently gave me a feta cheese tasting which was enlightening. The flavors of feta are wide ranging and at that tasting I preferred a Greek feta which was a combination of sheep and cow milk, who knew!? There was also one feta I tasted that was horrible, just tasted salty with a weak flavor. I like your idea of marinating the cubes of feta and serving with a few grapes and crackers;-)

  18. Looking at your photos make me feel like I’m in the Mediterranean! Speaking of the Mediterranean, share some S of France pics, please? :)

  19. Wine o’clock – love that! What a great way to salvage this, and make it great!

  20. I could eat a whole bowl of that too, I adore feta and put it on everything!

  21. Feta is the best cheese in the world. I am from Greece and Feta is the basic element of our nutrition!

  22. Jean this looks and sounds so good – and your images are just stunning! The light, the colors, just beautiful – especially that opening photo. Pinning!

  23. wendyb964 says:

    I first tried this at the antipasti bar at our local Whole Foods. It was marinated in lemon-flavored olive oil and fresh thyme. Though we rarely make it, it is absolutely heaven and gobbled quickly when taken to a gathering.

  24. I make feta with fresh goat milk (from my own goats). I can’t wait to try this with it. The goat milk feta is mild and creamier than cow as well. Will this recipe over power it too much?

    • lemonsandanchovies says:

      I don’t think so at all. Please do give it a try and let me know how it goes. It must be wonderful to be able to make your own cheese! :)

  25. Cristina says:

    Jean, this is gorgeously delicious! I love feta cheese and than marinating it in a lemony olive oil too? What a lovely appetizer for a quiet evening at home w/Hubbs & wine or for entertaning. On my to make list!

  26. Isaac Hernandez says:

    Delicious. I love Feta Cheese and the lemon juice made it so much better.
    - (EasterEgg) –

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