Perfect for afternoon tea snack and parties
Prep: 20 min // Bake: 30 min // Cooldown: 15 min
This is the perfect snack. It's perfectly balanced between tanginess and sweetness as the feta blends with sweet potato, and is rich in nutrition too (protein, fibre, vitamins). I've chosen a combination of different flours here (wholemeal and buckwheat) to give it a slightly heavier and nuttier taste than white flour, not to mention the higher nutrition boost.
In this recipe, I have decorated it with seeds on the top to give it an artisan bake feel. Decoration meets no boundaries, just use your imagination (or whatever is available in your cupboard) and improvise. Nuts, dry herbs, oats or sesame seeds will equally do the job.
Microwave, big bowl, medium bowl, balloon whisk, loaf tin (around 22cm)
1 Sweet potato (around 200-250gr)
250gr flour: 150gr wholemeal + 100gr buckwheat (or just use plain)
75gr butter, room temperature (vegetarians use margarine instead)
200gr Greek Feta Cheese (preferably reduced fat), crumbled
50gr parmesan, grated
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp nigella seeds
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 lemon, juiced
10 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)
2 sprigs fresh rosemary (optional)
Salt & pepper
Flour: In the case of wholemeal and/or buckwheat absence, use plain all-purpose flour.
Parmigiano > Pecorino. Parmesan has a very distinct flavour: it's bold, it's tangy and a bit salty. A good alternative is Pecorino though a bit saltier and much creamier (i.e. fattier). Greeks also might be looking at some Cycladic Graviera cheeses.
Nigella seeds > black sesame seeds. Looks will be similar but taste-wise might differ as nigella have a slightly bitter, more intense flavour that resembles cumin or oregano.
Fresh herbs > dry herbs: can be replaced with dry, but make sure you add 20-30% more dry product to level up the taste.
Butter > Dairy-free (Margarine). Some are lactose intolerant, vegans or simply there's nothing else in the fridge and too lazy to go shopping. These kinds of butter can be altered however the replacement can affect not only the taste but structure as well. If you go for dairy-free butter and notice the mixture is too soft or watery add some more pinches of flour to reduce the moisture. Use in 1:1 ratio.
Boil the potatoes (skin on) for 10-15 mins or alternatively, for faster results, microwave them for 5 mins until a fork can pierce through. When they are cool enough, remove skin and grate them.
Preheat the oven to 180c (160c fan) and put the milk with the lemon juice and pinch of salt in a small bowl and set aside until you prepare the dough.
Add the dry ingredients, flour, baking powder, soda, nigella seeds, grated parmesan, oregano, thyme and some chopped rosemary leaves (if using) and a large grind of pepper into a big bowl. Mix thoroughly, add the potato and 3/4 of the crumbled feta and mix again.
Crack the eggs into the milk bowl add the butter and whisk lightly (do not overmix). Combine with the dry ingredients and mix with your hand to form a soft dough.
Line a cake loaf tin with parchment paper (mine is around 22cm long) or use a muffin tin (will make roughly 10-12 medium-sized muffins) and pour the dough into it.
Scatter the remaining feta, some rosemary leaves and to it with some seeds, if available (nigella, sesame, sunflower go all well).
Bake for around 30 minutes or until it is slightly golden as in photos.
Let it cool down in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack for another 10.
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