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Author Notes: Talking about cheese and crackers in one:) These crispy cheese bites taste even better when drizzled with fresh home made lemon garlic aioli. Presented here with feta cheese, but you can substitute with semi-hard cheeses like Emmental, Gruyère or Gouda. —Milena
Paprika Panko Crusted Feta Bites
- 3/4 pound feta cheese in brine (preferably Bulgarian sheep feta)
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
- 1 tablespoon Paprika
- 1/4 cup olive oil or vegetable oil
- 1 bunch garlic chives or another fresh herb
- Turn oven to 350° F. Prepare a silpat lined sheet pan.
- Pat dry the feta chunk and cut into bite size pieces (about as big as chicken nuggets).
- Make an egg wash by beating the eggs, set aside.
- Mix together the flour, Panko crumbs and paprika in a bowl.
- Heat the oil in a pan over medium-high heat.
- Working one piece at a time, immerse cheese in egg wash and cover with Panko mixture, then place in heated frying pan.
- Light fry on both sides, working with 4 - 5 pieces at a time, do not overcrowd the pan.
- Carefully remove cheese pieces from pan and set on a paper towel to absorb any extra oil. Arrange drained bites on the silpat lined sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. Make the aioli (below) during this time.
- Take cheese bites out of the oven and carefully transfer onto a serving platter. Drizzle with aioli and add the fresh herb garnish of your choice.
Lemon Garlic Aioli
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 garlic cloves, pressed
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pinch salt
- Begin by beating the egg yolks with a mixer and add the salt, pressed garlic and lemon juice.
- Continue beating as you slowly add the extra virgin olive oil until it is well incorporated.
- Spoon aioli over cheese bites.