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This site contains the highly fictionalized ramblings of a raconteur looking for a place in the medical world. The vignettes presented are cobbled together from various and sundry places.  Any resemblance to actual people, places, or events is purely coincidental.

And, I like to photograph things in lieu of words some days.

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Sunday
Dec292013

Peter's Screamin' O Feta Dip

I am Greek.
Food is love.
Are you hungry, here, have some lamb.

Okay so the last line was partially a joke, but seriously, that's how I grew up.  Food is the most important thing in the world. It's the key to living well.  Sure, exercise and fresh air are great things, but food is the fuel that stokes the fire.  And in a Greek household, food is undoubtedly love.

And with love in mind I share this dip with you.

A little background.  This dip is a modified version of a recipe found in The Grecian Plate, one of the better Greek-American cookbooks out there.  It's written by a group of church ladies and the recipes are pretty damn authentic if you're looking for the kind of Greek things you might get in your local Greek restaurant or diner.

Be warned, you'll use lots of pots and pans if you start cooking Greek food.  There are very few shortcuts in Greek cookery.  Lots of hearty, braised, well seasoned layers of flavors which take time and effort to develop.

But back to the dip, which uses only the food processor.

The first time I made it for my family I riffed on the books' recipe quite a bit.  I changed a thing here, added a dash of something there, and generally made a bowl of creamy goodness that I wanted to rub over every possible food item in the world and devour it immediately.

The family loved it.  Then I brought it to the hospital where I worked at the time.  Every single nurse, doc, clerk, etc. who tasted it on a cracker, veggie, fill-in-the-blank-dippable item, immediately made their O face (yep, I went there) and exclaimed "oh GOD this is SO good!"

And thus it was named Peter's Screamin' O Feta Dip.

This is neither a low-fat nor low-sodium recipe.  Using the good stuff, full-fat ingredients, makes the best dip for various scientific reasons having to do with fat emulsions and whatnot. This is not the dip to give to grandma or grandpa with congestive heart failure.  This is not the kind of dip you can stop eating unless you loathe feta.  And if you loathe feta I'm not sure we can be friends.

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Peter's Screamin O Feta Dip

 

8oz feta, room temperture
8oz cream cheese, room temperature
8oz cottage cheese, room temperature
1/2 t dried oregano
1 clove of garlic (or two), crushed
a big pinch of ground cayenne (optional)
1/2 t fresh ground black pepper, more if you like
kosher salt**

 

N.B. The cheeses should be room temperature so everything blends properly. You can microwave them gently to warm them if you need, but don't cook them.

1. Blend everything (except salt) in a food precessor together until very smooth.

2. Taste. It will probably need salt to taste like more like feta. Add 1/4 t salt. Blend well and taste again.

3. Keep adding salt 1/4 t at a time and blending until it's as salty as feta. It may take 3/4 t or more until you get there, depending on how salty your feta is initially.

4. Refrigerate for at least six hours for the flavors to fully blend. Overnight is best.

**If you don't use kosher salt, be very careful when adding regular table salt. The grains are very fine and you can add too much too quickly. I use kosher salt because it’s non-iodized. I don’t like the taste of iodized salt in this recipe (or any really) because it gives food a metallic tang I find unpleasant. But if all you have is table salt, don’t skip this recipe.

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