Chef's Recipes

Barrel-aged feta tou fournou with chilli, roast garlic and oregano

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for barrel-aged feta tou fournou with chilli, roast garlic and oregano by Alpha restaurant in Sydney.

By Peter Conistis
  • Serves 4 - 6
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 1 hr cooking plus resting
Barrel-aged feta tou fournou with chilli, roast garlic and oregano
Barrel-aged feta tou fournou with chilli, roast garlic and oregano

"Try to source a barrel-aged feta such as the Mt Vikos or a spicy piperati. It will really make this meze sing," says Peter Conistis.

Ingredients

  • 20 garlic cloves (about 100gm)
  • 1 tbsp lemon thyme leaves
  • 200 ml mild-flavoured olive oil
  • 4 100gm pieces barrel-aged feta (see note)
  • 8 pickled green chillies (see note)
  • 2 long red chillies, seeds removed, finely diced
  • 1 tsp dried Greek oregano (see note)
  • 2 tbsp oregano
Fillo crisps
  • 150 gm plain flour (1 cup)
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • For brushing: melted butter

Method

Main
  • 1
    For fillo crisps, preheat oven to 180C. Combine flour, oil, ½ tsp salt and 80ml water in a bowl and mix to combine. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, knead until smooth (2-3 minutes), cover with plastic wrap and set aside to rest (1 hour). Halve dough and, working with one half at a time, roll through a pasta machine, folding, rolling and reducing settings notch by notch until the last setting, halve pastry sheet before rolling through the final setting. Place fillo sheets on a well-floured surface, brush one sheet of fillo with melted butter, sprinkle with sea salt, then top with another sheet of fillo. Press down lightly and cut into 5cm x 12cm rectangles. Repeat with remaining dough. Bake on an oven tray lined with baking paper until golden and crisp (10-12 minutes), then set aside.
  • 2
    Reduce oven to 160C. Place garlic cloves and thyme in a small baking dish, cover with oil and bake until garlic is soft and lightly golden (25-30 minutes). Reserve garlic and oil separately.
  • 3
    Increase oven to 200C. Cut each piece of feta lengthways into 4 thick slices and place each in an ovenproof ramekin. Divide roast garlic among ramekins and top each with 2 green chillies.
  • 4
    Combine red chilli and dried oregano with 80ml reserved garlic oil in a bowl and pour mixture evenly over feta. Bake until feta is warmed through (15-20 minutes). Top with fresh oregano and serve with fillo crisps.

Notes

Note Barrel-aged feta, pickled chillies and Greek oregano are available from Greek delicatessens.
Drink Suggestion: 2012 Kir-Yianni Petra, Florina, Greece. Drink suggestion by Vanessa Chant