By Imogen Bishop
When you’re on holiday, having a self-catering villa opens you up to a whole new realm of dining possibilities. If your villa is on the Greek island of Rhodes, then why not try your hand at a delicious local dish. With fresh and tasty ingredients that you might struggle to find elsewhere, it's easy to stock your luxury villa with some authentic Greek flavours and rustle up some easy meliasti.
Greeks tend to eat mezedes (the Greek word for appetizers), which tend to encompass a variety of fish and meat. These are enjoyed around a table accompanied with a glass of beer or ouzo (a Greek aperitif), so everyone dining gets to try everything on offer. You’ll often find tzatziki - a delicious blend of yoghurt, garlic and cucumber - alongside a mixed grill of local meats. And one dish which is no stranger to the table, is meliasti.
Image by grongar, used under Creative Commons license (CC BY 2.0)
Greece is notorious for its feta, and Rhodes is renowned for its honey. As soon as you dock on the island, you’re immediately made aware of the busy bees hard at work producing the delicious spread. Why not combine delicious Greek cheese and Rhodes honey to make the ultimate pastry-based snack for your self-catering holiday? Sound good?
Image by Michael Zero Mayer, used under Creative Commons license (CC BY 2.0)
Simple, no fuss meals for a self-catering break
The beauty of this dish lies in its simplicity. That’s not to say it’s not elegant enough to impress the whole table at a dinner party, mind you. With minimum preparation and washing up needed, it’ll leave you more time to happily sun yourself by the pool of your villa.
You’ll be able to whip it up in next to no time back home, and the taste will transport you straight back to pearlescent white Greek beaches. To make enough for two, here’s what you’ll need –
• 200g Greek feta
• 2 sheets of filo pastry
• 2 tablespoons of runny honey
• 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
• 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
• olive oil
• 1 tablespoon of water
Start by chopping the feta into four equal sized pieces, each roughly 1cm thick. If it’s wet, give it a wipe with some kitchen towel (this’ll help the pastry to stick later). Cut the filo pastry into four pieces, and brush each one with a little olive oil. Once you’ve done this, fold them all in half. Place each piece of feta onto the pastry and wrap them into four small parcels.
Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a pan, and once it’s hot fry each of the parcels until they’re golden brown on each side. If they’re a little too oily after doing so, rest them on some absorbent kitchen roll. In a separate pan, heat the honey, red wine vinegar and water until the mixture is boiling and the honey has dissolved. Place the feta and pastry pieces in a dish and drizzle them generously with the honey mixture. Sprinkle them with sesame seeds, and serve hot with some Greek salad!
Meliasti makes everyone happy, and it’ll make you love your Greek holiday that little bit more.
Enjoy this? Why not read about local food specialities in Menorca?
Imogen Bishop is a part time travel writer, part time restaurant critic, and full time mum. She has an affinity for Mediterranean cuisine and can usually be found in the kitchen with a bottle of olive oil in hand.