Saganaki Bites with Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

  • Serves

    makes 24 Bites


In this Greek small bite, kasseri cheese, a type of sheep's milk feta, is fried and topped with zesty olive and sun-dried tomato tapenade. Dipping the cheese in cold water before coating them with flour is essential; it helps the flour to adhere and prevents the cheese from leaking into the oil as it fries.


  • 12 cup sun-dried tomatoes, dry, not packed in oil, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
  • 14 tsp. dried oregano
  • 12 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb. kasseri cheese, cut into 1½" cubes
  • 14 cup flour
  • 1 tbsp. thinly sliced mint leaves
  • Canola oil, for frying


Step 1

Place tomatoes in a bowl and cover with 1 cup boiling water. Soak until soft, about 15 minutes; drain, add to the bowl of food processor with oil, olives, oregano, zest, juice, garlic, salt and pepper and puree until smooth; set aside.

Step 2

Heat 1½" oil in a deep 12" skillet to 375°. Dip cheese in cold water and dredge in flour. Working in batches, fry, flipping once, until golden brown on all sides, about 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain and top each saganaki with 1 tsp. tapenade; garnish with mint.

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