The mythological value of cheese
Who doesn’t love cheese? Greek Gods did! They most certainly still love it. Many myths tell us about the mystery and adoration of cheese. For example, in Lithuanian mythology, Giant called Džiugas married a human woman, and made the legendary cheese to celebrate their unusual love. Džiugas taught humans the art of making the best cheese in the world. I must admit, after tasting thousands of cheeses, Džiugas is among my favourites. However, I wouldn’t be a true Hellene if I did not claim that the best cheeses in the world are made in Greece. (I guess everybody says this for their country).
This is an easy and classic Greek recipe for Saganaki cheese. This is, of course, a keto version. You will need only two ingredients that will twist your taste buds to another level of goodness. Saganaki took its name from a pan that is being used for preparation. It is a small pan with a thick bottom and 2 handles. Saganaki is an amazing Greek dish which comes in many variations. In other recipes, I will show you how to make Saganaki mussels and Saganaki shrimps.
How to make it?
To make the classic Saganaki cheese, you will have to be very careful with choosing the right kind. It should be semi-hard or hard to withstand the heat and not melt in the pan. The original Greek Saganaki is made with Kefalotyri (κεφαλοτύρι), Kefalograviera (κεφαλογραβιέρα), Graviera (γραβιέρα) or Cypriot Halloumi (χαλλούμι). Now, if you are not living in Greece it might be difficult to find all these cheeses. But if your country imports Greek cheeses, go for them. However, if you are not lucky to have Greek cheeses available, I assembled a list of internationally famous cheeses that can be used for Saganaki:
Džiugas – Lithuania
Paški sir – Croatia
Aged Gouda – Netherlands
Aged cheddar – England
Baita Friuli – Italy
Livanjski sir – Bosnia and Herzegovina
Parmigiano-Reggiano – Italy
Aggiano – USA
Kačkavalj – Serbia
Idiazábal – Spain
El Trigal Manchego – Spain
Provolone – Argentina
Of course, if you have your favourite hard cheese that can stand high heat, please let me know in the comments. Try to use hard or semi-hard yellow cheeses. The most important part is that the saganaki needs to have a nice and thick crust. So that it does not melt in your pan. And now, let’s get to the point. Here’s the Keto recipe for Saganaki cheese:
Saganaki Cheese the Olympian food
50g (1.8 oz) almond flour
100g (3.5 oz) hard aged cheese
Coconut oil or tallow
- Choose your favourite cheese and cut a rectangular piece about 2cm thick. Try not to cut it thinner because it will melt in the pan.
- Dip the cheese in cold water and then dip it into almond flour. Turn it several times to cover all the sides.
- Shake it to remove the excess almond flour. This will help the saganaki to keep its shape when fried. Also, it will form a nice crispy crust.
- In a small frying pan add enough coconut oil or lard to cover about half of the frying pan.
- Wait until the pan has a high temperature. Put the saganaki to fry and when it turns golden-brown turning it on the other side.
- Serve the saganaki while it’s still hot.
- When the Saganaki is ready, pour some lemon juice over it and serve it. I guarantee that everyone will love it. Well, of course, if they like the cheese in the first place. But most of people adore cheese! Enjoy and stay Keto!