Tuesday, 26 May 2015

A typical Lebanese Snack, Olives and Cheese

Dressed Olives and Manchego Cheese

Olives dressed Lebanese Jamaican style

A typical Lebanese snack I grew up eating was a dish of cheese, olives, and bread! This was also eaten at breakfast or as an after dinner offering instead of a sweet desert. The bread is usually Pita but any flatbread would work equally well. The cheese is a hard, white, salty cheese like Greek Kefalotiri or Kasseri, Bulgarian Kashkaval, or Spanish Manchego. Olives are a mixture of black and green olives. Years ago, I would cure my own olives but now I buy them cured from a mainstream supermarket or a Middle Eastern or Greek store. The dressing I use is Lebanese-Jamaican style so it does differ from how the olives are dressed in Lebanon. Naturally, the Habanero pepper plays a role! There are no measurements.
Olives plus some of the brine in which they have been cured
Lemon or Lime juice
A small amount of vinegar, maybe 1-2 teaspoons (too much makes the olives get soft)
1-2 Habanero peppers with seeds, sliced.
Olive Oil
  1. Put the olives and the brine in a bowl. Make a couple of small cuts in the olives with a sharp knife.
  2. Chop up a couple of garlic cloves, coarsely. Add the chopped garlic,sliced Habanero pepper, thyme leaves, vinegar, and lemon or lime juice and mix all together.
  3. Place this mixture with all the liquid in a clean container, and cover the olives with olive oil. Keep refrigerated, and take olives out as needed with a CLEAN, DRY spoon. They will keep for quite some time like this.

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