Tag Archives: feta

The Detox – Goat Feta, Pickled Squash, Pickled Red Onion and Parsley Grilled Cheese

When you think of a 27 year old young lady living New York City, you probably think of some girl in a grey business suit, hair in a tight bun, desperately flagging a cab with one hand in the air while the other firmly grips a dripping cup of piping hot coffee. Well, let me tell you something that’s not what it’s like at all.  Having just turned 27 this week (yeah, that’s right, birthday plug right here!) I can assure you that it’s not the case – not even in the slightest. Instead of running around the city like Anne Hathaway in The Devil Wears Prada, I’m falling down the subway stairs in front of people, spilling roadies on random dogs, and wiping my sticky hair off of my sweaty face way too often for public appeal.

So even though my life isn’t falling into the mold that I once thought was the norm, having this birthday has been awesome so far. I turned a year older and wiser, ate a lot of Momofuku’s, and had the best birthday party of my life. I never thought that I’d still be throwing ragers that last until 10am the next day when I reached this mature age but I guess that’s the beauty of being drunk – you can just keep surprising yourself over and over again until someone sits you down and tells you to calm-the-f*ck-down. Not that that happened or anything but I guess I’m sort of waiting for it.

ANYWAYS! Ok, so let me tell you about my party because it’s all i’ve been thinking about since it happened. When I was trying to plan the event, one of my friends was talking about how birthdays should just be an excuse to make your friends do whatever the hell you want. Well I of course thought this was the best idea I’d ever heard so I went with it – like hardcore. A million ideas flowed out of my demented mind – make everyone come to the party dressed as a sad clown, have the guests be only allowed to crawl once they walked in the door, ya know weird funny stuff that could never happen in a normal situation.

But then the lightbulb turned on and a revelation happened. what was I doing having my friends crawl around or plaster their faces in scary clown makeup? Eff that noise I thought! I should have a tropigoth dance party! If you’ve never heard of tropigoth (which you probably haven’t because I made it up – I think) let me tell you about it. Think of tiki luau colliding with the underbelly of the goth world – Have no idea what I’m talking about? Well watch the intro of that new Major Lazer video then. But yeah, imagine it. Tropical goth kids dancing around in black lights, glowing hawaiian shirts paired with smeared black make up and upside down crosses. It was amazing. And from what I remember  it was totally insane. It lasted until 10am the next day and everyone looked nuts…it was perfect.

So sure, you can party like you’re 18 when you’re 27 but the after effects are brutal. After it happened I felt like absolute shit and needed a detox. That’s where this detox grilled cheese comes into play. Fresh goat feta meets quick pickled onions and summer squash and fresh parsley refreshes your palette while the wholegrain sourdough makes your stomach not feel so uneasy. It’s pretty good at making you feel pretty good if that makes sense. Ok, so let’s get going…

Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup of goat feta
– a few sprigs of parsley
– 2 slices of wholegrain sourdough
– 1/2 cup of quick pickled yellow squash
– a few slices of quick pickled red onions

To begin, lay on half of that delicious goat feta – spreading it slightly apart so that it’s not too overwhelming.

If you’ve only ever had typical feta then you are in for a treat. Fo’real. I’m totally obsessed with French goat version because it’s much sweeter than the typical salty brands that you buy from the store. It’s much more balanced and the texture is amazing. It melts in your mouth but also holds up when you cut it. It’s the shizzzz!

Now in the crevices, add some parsley! Because feta can have sort of a bite, this will refresh your palate  and even out the acidity.

Next add your pickled squash and onions. These veggies are slightly sweet but also tangy and they taste super duper fresh. So when your mouth tastes like a dirty old beer can, it’s the perfect solution!

To make a quick pickle, sprinkle equal parts sugar and salt (go pinch by pinch) and toss with your veggies. Finish with a few splashes of red wine vinegar and let it sit for about five minutes. It’s so easy and delicious. You’ll be using this quick little recipe all the time. I just know it.

Then add the rest of the feta and the top piece of bread and get ready to be refreshed!

Butter both sides of the bread and turn your burner to medium. You should probably take this waiting time to call your parents to let them know you’re ok. Two birds one stone… ya know?

Then once it starts to get all crispy and irresistible, flip it and repeat.

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Once it’s all purdy on both sides, take it off and cut it and eat immediately! You don’t even need to wait with this grilled cheese because the feta isn’t really going to change its texture – it’s just going to get hot and delicious. Don’t cry! Don’t be scared that it’ll ooze out everywhere!

So to be completely honest, it’s a dirty non-glamorous life trying to make it in this hustling city but it is fun as hell and I that’s what makes it worth it. Oh, and if you ever need any party planning ideas or whatever you should totally email me. My mind has way too many weird ideas racked up!

xoxo,

GCS

The Buffer – Feta, Roasted Red Pepper Relish and Baby Spinach Grilled Cheese

So after writing last week’s post and reading all of your comments, I’ve been drinking a lot thinking a lot. Can failed relationships really that fun to read about? Although I think that y’all actually liked my sob story (seriously, thanks for the comments), I feel as if last week’s post may have pulled some heartstrings and might have made you feel bad for me. I know that everyone can relate to heartbreak, but that’s not what I want this blog to be about. I want it to be about ridiculous stories and awesome grilled cheese sandwiches. So here’s one funny breakup story to even me out from last week’s disaster.

When I was a junior in college, I was recently single and was inadvertently rebounding with hot, tall, kind-hearted pianist dude who was a super-talented with his mouth. Although I had no real interest in playing the piano, my id told me it was a good time to start. I’d taken lessons when I was younger but quit when my piano instructor, who was about three hundred years old, died – just days before my first recital. After telling him about my unfortunate piano history and how I had always wanted to know how to tickle the ivories, he told me he’d give me some lessons. Of course, being the opportunist that I am, I went with it. So after a sessions of hanging out on his bed piano bench, fluttering my lacquered lashes, perking up my boobs, and laughing like he was the funniest thing in the world, I had a few songs memorized and a certain someone off my mind.

As we started hanging out more regularly, we took a road trip with some friends to see  Radiohead. We had the cheapest seats possible and had snuck a ton of booze into the venue because there was no way in hell that we were going to pay $10 for a bud heavy. Half a water bottle full of tequila later, the boy and I totally tricked the bouncer into letting us snag some seats in the third row. At that I point was pretty wasted, but I can vaguely remember sloppily making out while they were playing “All I Need” and feeling like this maybe wasn’t a rebound after all. But then, as soon as we got back to Tallahassee, I guess I WAS NOT all that he needed because he totally dumped me for some spray tanned Hooters waitress.

Yes, a Hooters waitress. A shiny-orange-shorts-wearing-camel-toed-Hooters-waitress. She might have even been a stripper. At least that’s what my friends told me, but I think they were just trying to make me feel better. But I get it, I get it. Free chicken wings and big ole titties are very appealing, especially to a 22 year old man-boy. At the time I was truly devastated. How could some girl with frizzy bleach blonde hair, dark roots, and scrunchy socks be more appealing than me? I knew about cartoons, could cook amazing stuff when I was wasted, and I could even quote Mr. Show. Isn’t that what every boys wants? Hahaha. Yeah, right, not so much. Now that I’m 26 and haven’t seen a Hooters retaurant, let alone a chicken wing waitress, in like 5 years, I think it’s the funniest break-up story ever. I totally got dumped for chicken wings! Or maybe it was the blow jobs that he was getting in the parking lot after she hooked him up with a free meal.

And although this grilled cheese has absolutely nothing to do with Hooters or shitty boys, it is really good and I think you’ll dig it. Oh! And of course, you voted for it on Facebook.

Grab these goodies and go with it.

Ingredients:

– 1/3 cup of crumbled feta
– 2 tbsp of roasted red pepper relish
– 1/4 cup of fresh baby spinach
– 2 slices of seven grain bread
– 2 pats of salted butter
– 1 pinch of dried parsley

Just like the beginning of every single post I do, the first step begins with sprinkling on some cheese. This salty, moist Greek queso doesn’t really melt but it does get all soft and creamy. Just like your brain feels when you start to fall for someone. Then it hardens up to a dried mass of disgustingness that’s similar to when some dingdong dumps you for a Hooters waitress. Just kidding. I’m not bitter about it anymore, I swear.

Then spoon on some of the red pepper relish. Its tart, sweet bite contrasts nicely with the saltiness from the feta.

I think that opposites attract but I wouldn’t take dating advice from me.

Then for some freshness, add a few baby spinach leaves. I think these tender-hearted veggies add a nice textural variation and it’s a good ingredient when you need to switch it up.

Sprinkle on some more cheese for good measure… if you haven’t scarfed it all up yet. Emotional eater.

Add the top piece of bread and wait four years until you can laugh about that one time when someone cared more about buffalo sauce and ranch dressing than your chilled out demeanor and cool dance moves.

Turn your griddle to medium high, blast your sandwich press with some fire, and melt some of that butter alongside that dried parsley. Gah, her skin was really dry , too!  Place your sandwich on top of the melted herb butter. When your press gets super hot, carefully pick it up and sear the crap out of your grilled cheese.

It’ll look like this! No false intentions or misleading bullshit with food.

Now let it sit for a minute until it becomes a funny story that you can blog about in a couple years.
 
And in case this whole story made me sound like a complete bitch, there’s nothing wrong with being a Hooters waitress. Actually, if you are, I’m a little envious. I could totally use a boob job and some chicken wings tonight. Thanks y’all.

xoxo,

GCS

Lettuce & Feta – Nothing Betta – Grilled Romaine Hearts, Red Onion, and Feta Grilled Cheese

Now that I’m working at Saveur I get to spend my whole day around food.  I absolutely love it.  It’s like a dream job that I never knew could be real, except it totally is!  I am constantly taste testing, reading and writing about food, helping with shoots, and hanging out with some awesome people who couldn’t be more kind.  The other day when I was cruising the web trying to find some news for Saveur.com‘s section Links we Love, I came across a grilled caesar salad and I was instantly hungry.  I had never grilled lettuce before but it seemed like a fun thing to do so I tried it out.  To my surprise, grilling romaine really mellows out the bitterness and intensifies the underlying lettuce flavor.  I decided to pair it with some sauteed red onions, feta, and balsamic glaze to give it a nice Greek twist. 

Here’s what you need to make this Greek treat…

Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup of feta
– 1 1/2 tbs of sauteed red onion
– 1/2 tbs of balsamic glaze
– 2 pats of salted butter
– 2 pieces of sourdough bread
– 1 grilled red romaine heart

To begin, place a few thinly sliced pieces of feta on top of your sourdough.  I love feta. It’s super salty but not too overwhelming and the texture is a weird mix between moist and firm.  When you take a bite it’s like a salty ninja kicks you in the mouth and then hugs your tastebuds until you feel all better, well sort of.

Then on top of that, delicately place your grilled romaine heart.  This is actually my first time making/eating this and it was super easy.  So if you’ve never done it before and you want some guidance, let me tell you how I did it.

You basically begin by cutting a piece of romaine down the middle and cranking up your grill to a very high heat.  Then drizzle some olive oil on top of your lettuce and place it on the heat.  After a few minutes it’ll start to tenderize and caramelize at which point you’ll grind some peppercorns and crack some seal salt on top. 

Place on some of those sweet and semi-crunchy red onions.

Hit it with a few drizzles of balsamic glaze.  I buy the pre-made kind because I am way too lazy use it way too often to have to make it for myself but I’d definitely recommend home-made reductions over the store bought kind.

Then put a few more slices of the feta to create a glue which helps the ingredients bond together. 

 Put your top piece of bread on and then smother it with some butter.

Before you put the sandwich on the grill, heat up your press on high heat for a couple of minutes.  Meanwhile, heat your pan to medium high and melt some butter for the other side of the sandwich.  

 When everything is heated up (which should be about five minutes) place your sandwich in your pan and smush it with your press.  I totally spaced when I picked up my press and didn’t think that the wooden handle would be burning hot, but it was, and now my hand is hurt.  And I want my mom and a xanax.

 Make sure not to move it for a few minutes so you end up getting nice grill marks.  I let mine sit on there for about four minutes before I flipped it and pressed the other side.

And finally when it’s all golden and crispy on each side, take it off the grill and serve immediately!

Now if only I had a nice glass of wine and/or were swimming around in the Greek Isles with some hot stud… I guess there’s always tomorrow.

xoxo,

GCS