How does a baked block of feta, cherry tomatoes, and some pasta – all mixed together – sound to you? For millions of fans on TikTok, the combination has gone down a storm.
But if you want to know how else you can use that slab of deliciously salty and crumbly Greek cheese in your cooking, look no further. We asked chefs how they’d cook with a block of feta, and here’s what they said.
1. Roasted feta with spices
“Try it roasted whole, sprinkled with Dukkah (middle eastern spices), olive oil and a punnet of cherry tomatoes,” says Charlotte Pike, cookery book author.
Asimakis Chaniotis, executive chef of Michelin-starred restaurant Pied à Terre, agrees that on its own works well. “One of my all-time favourite recipes is Feta Bouyiourdi – it’s where we take a big piece of feta, place it in an oven dish and cover it with grated tomatoes, garlic, sliced peppers, onions and oregano.
“Use the ripest tomatoes you can find for this and bake it at 180°C, covered with foil, until the veggies are softened. Then, remove the foil and place under a hot grill at 220°C until the cheese is a nice golden colour. Serve with some crusty bread.”
2. Feta in flatbread with fresh salad
Chef Ben Tish, culinary director of the Stafford Collection, says he’d grill the whole slab under a very hot grill until browned and caramelised, then sprinkle over some chopped red chilli, a drizzle of honey and some picked fresh thyme leaves. “I’d then give it another minute grilling and then serve with some warm flat bread and a spinach and cucumber salad,” he adds.
3. Fried feta with gently warmed figs
Masterchef champion Simon Wood suggests a saganaki-style dish of fried feta served with fresh organic honey and gently warmed figs or peaches. You’ll need a pack of feta, two eggs beaten, 100g four, olive oil, 5tbsp honey, and two small peaches or ripe figs. To make the feta saganaki, cut each block of feta in half to make two even pieces about 2cm thick, Dip them into the beaten egg, then coat entirely with flour, repeat this process to give a nice coating.
“Heat your oil in a frying pan until hot. Fry the coated feta for two minutes on each side or until golden brown. Remove and drain off any excess oil, and in the same pan gently heat your fruit with a little oil and a squeeze of your honey. Place the crisp feta onto a plate and top with the fruit and oregano, drizzle with honey and serve immediately.”
4. Marinated feta for the fridge
Gemma Simmonite, talented chef and co-founder of Gastrono-me, says her favourite (and an easy) way to use feta is to marinate it. She suggests using olive oil, three cloves of garlic, a small chilli, chopped fresh herbs including mint, oregano and thyme, 1/2 tsp of dried chilli flakes, one bay leaf and a small pinch of peppercorns.
“In a large sterilised jar, combine all the marinade ingredients, pull down the lid tightly and give a really good shake,” she says. “Add the feta and you’re done! The flavour will keep on developing and it keeps in the fridge for three weeks.”
5. Baked feta with warm pitta
Cesar Fernandez, chef at Miele GB, says the best way to cook a whole slab of feta is to bake it whole with sweet roasted peppers and thinly sliced red onions for 20-25 minutes – “the veg will get a little sweeter after cooking in the oven with the cheese. Serve with a warm pitta bread for a delicious, easy lunch.”
6. Almond-crusted feta
Chef Irini Tzortzoglou suggests an almond-crusted slab. “Dust it with flour, dip in beaten egg, dust in Panko breadcrumbs and almond flakes, and shallow fry in very good extra virgin olive oil for a couple of minutes each side. Accompany it with a salad with fruit like strawberries or pomegranates, and a pomegranate molasses dressing.”
7. Feta mixed with grains
Marwa Alkhalaf, chef at Nutshell, Covent Garden, says bake your feta to the melting point and not further so it doesn’t get clumpy. Then, mix it with grains – “it doesn’t have to be pasta! The saltiness and creaminess of the feta goes perfectly with any type of grains, legumes or even vegetables. Think farro, maftul, butter beans, chickpeas or even cauliflower.
“Finally, balance the richness of your feta with some acidity and freshness with a sprinkle of sumac or lemon zest or your herb of choice.”
8. Feta folded into scrambled eggs
Chef Simmonite also recommends having feta for breakfast by cooking scrambled eggs, then folding your feta into them – making them silky, cheesy and delicious.