Feta cheese marinated with Paperbark Smoke Oil
You’ll find a wide variety of marinated feta cheese in your local supermarket or gourmet deli. However I really enjoy marinating feta with my own flavours. Often I’ll do flavour combinations like Alpine Pepper or lemon Myrtle sprinkle with Macadamia nut oil or Mintbush marinade and vegetable oil which, incidentally, was developed just for this recipe. The ideas are endless.
Remove the feta cheese from the pack and cut into 1.5cm cubes. Transfer the fetta cubes into a colander with a fitting bowl and cover with warm water. Leave to soak for 20 minutes to reduce the salt in the fetta then drain and leave to drip for 5 minutes. Transfer the cubes to an appropriate jar, adding the herbs as the pieces are layered in. Once all in the jar (or plastic pail such as a honey pail) finish with a generous sprinkle of herbs.
In a saucepan, heat up around 750ml vegetable oil until swirl patterns start to form in the oil. The temperature should just be warm, around 45°C then pour enough warm oil to cover the cheese. Lastly, add the paperbark smoke oil and the lid before allowing to stand at room temperature over night. Chill for storage. The marinated feta cheese will keep in the fridge for up to six months and the fetta can be used as antipasti, in salads, melted with any dish as an accompaniment or used as a stuffing in butterfly pork loin which gets tied up with string and pan fried. The oil can be used in hollandaise, mayonnaise or salad dressings, as a drizzle over eggs, meats, marinated vegetables, stir-fries and so on.