My Big Fat Greek Lunch II

This time I made Mαριναρισμένες ελιές, that’s marinated olives for you. And darn tasty they were too. I don’t know if this is authentic Greek cuisine or not but it’s the way I made them and they were really, really good.

There are two ways of making this. Either you make the marinated olives, leave them for a week and then add the feta cheese (before serving or with the olives) or you can do the marinade first, divide it in two and add olives to one and cubed feta cheese to the other. Both ways are delicious.

There’s only one drawback: you need to leave them for a week (yes, A WHOLE WEEK!) before eating them and I can assure you, it is really hard when you have that jar of freshly-made olives and cheese looking at you just waiting to be eaten as part of a  Μεζεδάκια, perhaps as a prelude to Σουβλάκι?

The wait, needless to say, is well worth it.

Mαριναρισμένες ελιές

Marinated olives (with feta cheese)© Gabriela R.

Make a basic vinaigrette with salt, pepper, vinegar and about 1 cup olive oil. Add whole garlic (or crush them a bit if you like it more garlicky). Add some dried chilli pepper and herbs torn by hand. Add green olives, mix well and add some feta cheese, cubed. Place in a sterilized jar. Add a slice of lemon and top up with olive oil. Make sure it is completely full of oil and has no air gaps. Close the lid and leave it for a week before eating.

As part of this little meze, I also made some olive paste which turned out to be delicious but not very photogenic, so I decided to do without a photo.

If you have a food processor, you’ll be laughing with this recipe. I don’t have one so I wasn’t laughing. I used my very reliable pestle and mortar.

That’s why there were some olive chunks in the paste but, since it was only for me and not for a function or a customer, I didn’t mind. I actually prefer it like this.

Olive paste – adapted from a recipe by Vefa Alexiadou

This is a delicious meze served with ouzo.

Makes 250ml

50g cashew nuts
400g stoned black olives, sliced
3 tbs olive oil (optional)
1-2 tbs red wine vinegar
½ tsp dried oregano
1 small garlic clove (optional)

Put the nuts into a food processor and grind to a smooth paste. (I used the pestle and mortar).

Add the remaining ingredients and process for 1-2 minutes, until the mixture is well blended. Serve with crackers, spread on sandwiches, or use as a sauce for cooked pasta.

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