Baked feta is not just a recipe but a strategy, something you can always turn to when you need a quick yet impressive appetizer. A little time in the oven mellows out the tangy saltiness of the cheese, which can be smeared on bread or crackers. Depending on your mood and the season you might top the cheese with tomatoes, peppers, dried fruits, herbs, or spices. In this version the feta gets a sprinkle of honey, walnuts and thyme -- a scrumptious combination that's creamy, salty, savory and sweet.
Baked Feta with Honey, Walnuts, and Thyme
1 (8-ounce) block feta
3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Freshly ground black pepper
Bread or crackers for serving
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Drain the feta and blot it dry. Cut the feta into two rectangular slabs so that you can stack one on top of the other. (Some brands of feta are already packaged this way.)
Coat the bottom of a small ovenproof dish with 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Place one slab of feta in the dish and drizzle with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of honey. Place the other slab of feta on top and drizzle with the remaining 1 teaspoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of honey. Sprinkle the walnuts, thyme, and a crack of black pepper on top.
Place the dish in the oven and bake until the feta is soft but not melted, about 10 minutes.
Serve immediately with bread or crackers.