ts safe to say I’m a fan of Greece. The food, the weather, the glassy wakeboard inviting waters and the calming pace of life. I’ve even been partial to the odd Greek wine! I visit every year for my dose of Vitamin D and halloumi and to brush up on my water sports. But I’ll focus on the food for the time being. After experimenting with a unassuming pack of Odysea’s deliciously authentic Saganaki cheese last year it was time to venture into their range a bit more with my appreciation of Greece and the Med. Being the good natured Greek loving company that they are I arrived home one Friday evening after work to a box of delightful goodies to sample and experiment with!
And sample I did.
This recipe is adapted from a Bill Granger combination I once saw and with all the right flavours from Odysea (with the odd ‘forage in the pantry’ twist) it was the perfect foundation for my med inspired dish to help prolong the recent spring sun. The roasted oranges add a really unusual touch here along with the gentle spicing which are a perfect match with Odysea’s punchy, creamy and crumbly feta cheese. Heaps of mint, dill and lemon juice bring it all to life and sooth the post harissa spice! One to give a go on a sunny but still brisk Spring evening.
- 2 small oranges
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- 1 tsp ‘Odysea Wild Thyme & Fragrant Honey’
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 200g pearl barely or spelt
- Juice 1 lemon
- 1 carrot grated
- 200g ‘Odysea Greek Feta‘, crumbled in large chunks
- Large handful mint leaves
- Small handful dill, finely chopped
- 2 small poussin (or 4 joints of chicken e.g. chicken legs, thighs etc)
- 4-6 tbsp of ‘Odysea Harissa spread‘ or 2 tbsp harissa paste
- 2 large garlic cloves
- Salad to serve – I used a crisp mix of chicory, little gems and watercress dressed in some lemon and extra virgin olive oil (Odysea of course)
- Preheat the oven to 220°C.
- Marinade the poussin in the harissa, seasoning well and then add 1 pealed, gently crushed garlic clove to each cavity and set aside.
- Slice the oranges thinly and place on a lined baking tray evenly spread. Grind the fennel, cumin and chilli flakes in a pestle and mortar and then add the honey and olive oil and mix well. Coat the oranges slices in the mixture.
- Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes, keeping an eye on them until they begin to caramelise and char. This time with vary depending on how juicy the oranges are. Leave to cool slightly.
- Cook the barely or spelt according to the packet instructions until tender then drain well and leave to cool to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, turn the oven down to 190°C and place the poussin on a lined baking tray. Bake for around 40 minutes until tender and the juices run clear. Set aside to rest while you finish the salad.
- Add the warm oranges slices to the drained grains.
- Stir in the juice of the lemon, plenty of salt and pepper and the chopped dill.
- Scatter in the crumbled feta, the grated carrot and stir to combine.
- Finally, roughly chop the mint at the last minute and add to the grains and stir.
- Loosen with a little more lemon or a splash of extra virgin olive oil if needed
- Carve your rested poussin in half and serve half each alongside the grain and green salad, scattered with extra mint if you like
NOTES: This would also be lovely with a side of warm pillowy flatbreads, dipped into a cleansing and fresh lime and coriander yoghurt or tzatziki.
For a wine match I would suggest a fresh Chenin Blanc or the slightly aromatic taste of Viognier.