Melinakia-style snacks on the beach


I made these while we were still in Greece. Perfect snack or appetizer, I served them on the beach. Zoom in the photo to see the sea in the background! This recipe resembles  “Melinakia” so much it’s scary.  There’s nothing that can be claimed original anymore. I thought “Melinakia” was our family’s invention but I found this very similar recipe on Gourmet, the August 2011  issue that came with “Vima”, a Greek newspaper. It is signed by Eleni Psychouli. “Melinakia” is still a more kids-friendly version that uses ketchup and feta cheese. You will like this one better, though, for your grown-up guests.

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 puff pastry sheets, or pre-cut puff pastry squares/rounds
  • 1 pound goat cheese (which, in Greece, is more like feta that the goat cheese we get in the U.S.  in gourmet cheese stores)
  • 4 tomatoes, sliced
  • 6 tablespoons, or so, olive oil
  • fresh basil
  • freshly ground pepper

How to make:  While still cold, cut the puff pastry sheets in squares, rectangles, or rounds.  Arrange them in an lightly oiled pan. Lift the edges if you want.  Put a slice of cheese and a slice of tomato on each piece. I didn’t have goat cheese so I used manouri for half the rounds and plain feta cheese for the other half. Drizzle some olive oil on top.  Cook in pre-heated 375F/200C oven for about 40 minutes. Serve with fresh basil and freshly ground pepper. I didn’t have basil so I  served with oregano.

Notes and tips: I always line the pan with aluminum foil for easy cleaning, instead of oiling the pan.  Eleni Psychouli suggests using pita bread as alternative to puff pastry (reducing cook time to 15 minutes).

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