For us, Christmas time is all about sharing some delicious food with the ones you love. This recipe is just the thing you need to achieve that! Our creamy Marinated Buffalo Feta is complemented with the tartness of cranberries and toasted nuts. The log can be made ahead of time so you have nothing to stress about when your guests arrive. Serve with some fresh cherries and your favourite store-bought crackers, or if you’re feeling a little extra, have a go at making our delicious (and easy!) whole wheat crackers which pair beautifully with the flavours on this platter.
First, prepare the cracker dough by combining all the dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Now add the water and olive oil, and stir to a stiff dough. Move the dough onto the bench and knead by hand for just a minute. Cover the dough completely with cling wrap and allow it to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes (this will relax the dough making it easier to roll).
While the dough is resting, prepare the buffalo feta log by cutting the nuts and cranberries. Lightly toast the nuts in a pan to intensify their flavour and allow to cool in a bowl. Add the chopped cranberries and fresh thyme leaves. Strain the two jars of feta, removing the peppercorns and herbs, saving the oil if you like for another use. Lay a sheet of cling wrap on the bench and place a pile of the strained feta in the centre. Fold the cling wrap over and use your hands to begin molding the feta into a cylindrical shape. Now roll it completely and tightly in shape and place into the fridge to set.
Preheat the oven to 180°C fan forced bake and prepare a baking tray with a sheet of baking paper. Remove the cling wrap from the dough and dust it all over with a little additional flour. Using a rolling pin, begin rolling the dough out to achieve a thin sheet no more than 3mm thick (turning the dough and dusting with a little additional flour as you go to refrain it from sticking). Dock the sheet of pinned dough by puncturing it all over with fork indentations (this will help the dough not puff too much when it’s baking). Using a roller pizza cutter, or a knife, cut the sheet into your desired cracker shapes and sizes. For this recipe we have cut ours into 4.5cm x 2.5cm rectangles, however, the less precise you are the more beautiful and rustic these homemade crackers will look. Place the crackers spaced slightly apart on the prepared baking tray and bake for 9-12 minutes. Depending on how large you have cut them, they may take less or more time, so keep an eye on them and bear in mind they will continue to brown and crisp up when cooling.
While the crackers are baking, remove the feta log from the fridge and gently unroll the cling wrap. Place a new piece of cling wrap on the bench and spread a layer of the nut and cranberry mix over. Place the log on top and use the cling wrap to help you gently roll the log over the nut and cranberry mix, being sure to completely cover the outside of the log. Wrap up tightly once more in clog wrap and store in the fridge to set until ready to serve (this step can also be done ahead of time).
When ready to serve, remove the log from the fridge and unwrap the cling wrap. Place the log onto a long platter or board and pile the cooled whole wheat crackers along either side. Garnish with some fresh cherries and drizzle the raw honey over the top of the log for a sweet and shiny finish.