Say ‘Cheese’!

One, two, three: ‘cheese’ !

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Ingredients:

– 1 kg natural pot set yoghurt

– 1 teaspoon of salt

– 1 giant new Chux cloth

– 1 large, thick stick, a rolling pin or a large wooden spoon

– 1 deep bowl

– Excitement

Method:

Use your excitement to do the following:

Stir in 1 teaspoon of salt into 1 kg of natural pot set yoghurt. Rince your new Chux cloth in warm water only, then squeeze most of the liquid out, ensuring the cloth is still slightly wet. Pour your entire salted yoghurt mixture into this cloth, then gather the Chux cloth, ensuring it surrounds the mixture securely. Hang your mixture on your wooden spoon, or other utensil, ensuring the sides of the Chux cloth are tied to the wooden spoon, to prevent falling. Ensure that the mixture is hanging, so that a nice even drip can be established. Keep this mixture hanging for about 8 hours, or until exactly half of the yoghurt mixture has dripped out of the cloth. This mixture is called ‘whey’. The cheese is called ‘Labna’.

Compiling the Beauty:

Essemble your large blob of cheese the way you like it, so this part is entirely up to you. For me personally, I love this cheese with some beautiful Crusty wholemeal bread or Crusty Pane Di Casa bread – just devine!

Serves six or more people as part of an antipasto platter!

Enjoy!

Karina x

Get ya some Feta!

Karina’s Marinating Feta Recipe!

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Ingredients:

– 400 grams feta cheese (you can choose either full-cream or reduced-fat feta)

– Juice of half of one lemon

– 1 large rosemary sprig, snipped in 5 or so pieces

– 2 whole cloves of garlic, crushed and bruised slightly with the side of a knife

– 1 tablespoon italian mixed dried herbs

– 4 whole bay leaves

– Olive oil, enough to cover the feta in a jar

– One pinch of cracked black pepper

Method:

Grab a tall jar, or fat jar. Sanitise your jar by boiling in boiling water in a large pot, for approximately 10-12 minutes. Pre-heat your oven to 110 °C, while your jar is boiling in the boiling water. Once the 10-12 minutes are over, wearing clean oven mittens, immediately place the jar onto an oven tray, then place into the pre-heated oven. Take the jar out, as soon as the water has evaporated out of the jar. This should not take very long at all, so keep an eye on it. Once the water has evaporated out of the jar, turn you oven to ‘off.’ Take your jar out, so now it is ready to be used.

Cube your feta into 1 cm chunks. If you prefer larger chunks, you can cut them up larger. Pile all your feta into the sanitised jar. Place your crushed garlic between the cracks of the feta, in different places. Place all your cut pieces of rosemary, scattered around the feta in the jar. Then place your bay leaves, presenting them inside the jar, so they look pretty from the outside. Squeeze your lemon all over the feta in the jar, then pour all your olive oil, enough to completely cover every piece of feta. Sprinkle your black pepper into this mix, along with your italian mixed dried herbs.

Place the cap on your jar of marinated feta, then keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Beautiful!

Compiling the Beauty:

Arrange on a large serving platter, alongside your favourite crusty bread, marinated olives and any other antipasto sides you like!

Serves many as part of an antipasto platter!

Enjoy!

Karina x

Copyright © 2015 by Karina Teuma

I’ll have “olive” ’em!

Karina’s Super-Quick Cooking Tip: Curing Olives!

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The above is a photo of the olives I bought fresh tonight, from my local Italian fruit shop.

I intend to cure these olives, over a course of less than one week. The way to accomplish this, would be to slit the olives on average of five times for each olive, in order to allow maximum water and salt to penetrate these beauties. Hence, my cooking tip is also a time-saving tip! If you wanted to leave your olives whole while curing them, by all means do so, however, they will take much longer to cure, than they would with my method as per my above photo taken today.

My process of curing olives the quick way, involves a simple process, as follows:

Rinse your olives under fresh, running water, then drain your olives. Place approximately 4-5 slits in each of your olives (4 slits for smaller olives and 5 slits for larger olives). Pour all your olives in your large stainless steel pot. Let your hot water tap run for a few seconds, until its hot enough to fill your stainless steel pot, so that it can cover the olives. Pour your rock salt into this pot, then mix well. Rinse, then replace this water with fresh water and salt daily, for up to one week, or until your olives are to the taste you require (olives should be much less bitter). Please note, you only need to soak your olives in hot water and salt for the first day only. For every other day, up untill one week, you will need to soak your olives in cold water and salt.

Once your olives have been cured over the course of one week or less, via my quick version of curing, you are ready to marinate your beautiful olives! Marinate your olives with whatever recipe you prefer, or simply make your own olive recipe up! You’ll love ‘olive’ ’em anyway 🙂

Have fun in the kitchen!

Karina x