Cheese and grapes are a classic combination, but grapes aren’t really the secret ingredient in this recipe, but rather how they’re prepared that will have your guests reaching for a second serving. This is my take on traditional Greek saganaki, or fried cheese. A sturdy block of feta holds up well in a hot frying pan, crisping around the edges and softening slightly in the center without melting into a puddle. Blistered grapes add a pop of sweet, juicy flavor in every bite, while a drizzle of lemony honey with thyme rounds out the sweet, salty, sour trifecta.
Excerpted from THE SECRET INGREDIENT COOKBOOK © 2021 by Kelly Senyei. Photography © 2021 by Robert Bredvad. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.
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- 3 Cups red grapes
- 1 Cup walnuts
- 4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 2 Teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2/3 Cups all-purpose flour
- 1 (8-ounce) block feta cheese
- Crackers or toasts, for serving
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 425 F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Step 2: In a medium bowl, toss together 3 cups grapes and 1 cup walnuts with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
Step 3: Spread the mixture in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Roast for about 25 minutes, until the grapesare blistered and the walnuts are toasted. Set the baking sheet aside.
Step 4: In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon honey, and 2 teaspoons thyme.
Step 5: Spread 2/3 cups flour on a plate or in a shallow bowl. Dip the feta in water, then dredge it in the flour, shaking off any excess.
Step 6: Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Add the feta and cook, undisturbed, for 3 minutes. Flip it once and continue cooking until it’s golden brown and the cheese begins to crisp slightly, about 3 minutes.
Step 7: Transfer the feta to a serving plate. Top with the roasted grapes and walnuts, then drizzle with the lemon dressing. Serve with crackers or toasts.