As amazingly delicious as this marinated feta is, it’s going to have to wait while I tell you about the new, awesome cookbook the recipe came from: The CSA Cookbook.
The CSA Cookbook was written by Linda Ly, of the Garden Betty blog. I love Linda’s blog, which is a fairly new find for me. I’m thoroughly enjoying her posts on all things garden, chicken, and the homesteading lifestyle we all love over here. Well, she just released her first cookbook:
I was excited to get a copy to review because this cookbook addresses a topic I rarely see and that is super important to me: no waste recipes! Although my compost pile and animals love my scraps, I’m always trying to figure out what to do with the leaves, stems, rinds, and other bits and pieces left over after prepping a meal. And this cookbook doesn’t disappoint. I read it cover to cover upon receiving it and I highly suggest you do that, too. It’s chock full of information throughout, but the introduction in particular is really informative. Besides the useful chapter on how to store most veggies and herbs, there are two tables of ingredients (one for stock and one for pesto) that I know I’ll be going back to again and again.
Linda shares some great recipes for items like tomato leaves, carrot stems, watermelon rinds, cucumber sprouts, and so much more! Those kale stems we all cut from the leaves? There’s a recipe for that! She often suggests using what you have on hand, which you’ve heard me preach more than once over here at Farm to Table! So don’t be afraid to mix and match – and she offers suggestions for that in her book. CSA Cookbook is also beautifully photographed, which I feel is a must for a cookbook, don’t you? Every recipe has at least one full color image. Here’s the next recipe I want to try: Kohlrabi home fries. I wouldn’t have thought of that in a million years!
Whether it’s a CSA box you are cooking out of, your own garden, the farmers market… you will find great tips for using your veggies, stem to root! And if you happen to be in the greater LA area on April 11, stop by William’s Book Store in San Pedro for a special book signing Linda is doing, with yummy treats and raffle prizes. More info here.
Okay, back to the marinated feta cheese… I decided, in keeping with the tone of her cookbook, my first recipe would be using items I had on hand before they went bad. I have tons of herbs in my fridge right now and I can’t seem to find enough things to do with them (besides drying them of course), so I was happy to find her Marinated Feta With a Mess of Herbs recipe. Cheese and olive oil with aromatic herbs? What’s not to love!
If you can dare to part with it, this would make a great hostess gift… maybe even with a copy of the CSA Cookbook! I was going to give one of these jars to a friend, but since we ate most of the first jar within 24 hours, well, let’s just say that what she doesn’t know won’t hurt her!
I used the fresh herbs I had on hand, which was thyme, oregano, and rosemary. You could also try sage, marjoram, dill, or anything you have. My Meyer lemons were ripe for the picking, so I used one of those (as opposed to a regular lemon), as well as rainbow peppercorns I had from Melissa’s, instead of the all black ones called for in the recipe. I’m telling you all this because it’s okay! Use what you have!
You’ll want two tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs:
Zest and juice one lemon:
Combine the herbs, peppercorns, and a pinch of red pepper flakes with the lemon juice and zest and add to the olive oil. (For those of you that start twitching when you see words like ‘pinch’ and ‘dash’, I used about 1/8 teaspoon, but you can use more or less depending on the heat you want.)
Cube your feta and add to your jar(s):
Pour the olive oil/herb mixture over the feta, making sure to cover the cheese completely:
Marinate at room temperature for 3-4 hours (or longer if you can!). Any unused portion should be refrigerated after one day. I toasted up a baguette for these. I also plan on using some in a salad – using the herb infused oil as a dressing base (with just a bit of added vinegar), so don’t throw out the oil when the cheese is gone! See? A no waste recipe!
Please note that a copy of the CSA Cookbook was given to me to review. All opinions are absolutely my own… and I think this book is fantastic!