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Baked Almond Feta with Balsamic-Roasted Grapes

A Meat-Free High Protein Meal

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This is a perfectly balanced meat-free lunch option as it contains enough protein and healthy fats to meet your nutritional requirements but is also packed full of flavour and variety. It’s light enough to be used as part of any type of diet and will keep you feeling full and energetic.

INGREDIENTS

For the baked almond feta

250g blanched almonds

120ml cold water

Juice of 1 lemon

3 tbsp olive oil

1 garlic clove, peeled

1 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp nutritional yeast (yeast flakes)

1 tsp agar-agar powder

60ml warm water

2 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Grated zest of 1/2 lemon

For the balsamic-roasted grapes

  • 1 large bunch red grapes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • A few sprigs fresh thyme leaves, plus extra to garnish

Yields 4-8 servings

DIRECTIONS

For the baked almond feta

  • 1. Soak the almonds in cold water overnight, or boil in a small saucepan of water for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse.
  • 2. Place the soaked almonds in a high-speed blender, along with the cold water, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt and nutritional yeast, and process until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl.
  • 3. In a small pan, dissolve the agar-agar powder in the warm water, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 2–3 minutes.
  • 4. Remove from the heat and whisk into the almond mixture, along with the dried herbs, apple cider vinegar and lemon zest.
  • 5. Line a small, rounded bowl with cheesecloth and spoon the almond mixture into the cheesecloth, smoothing out the top with the back of a spoon.
  • 6. Fold over the edges of the cheesecloth to cover and chill in the refrigerator overnight.
  • 7. The next day, preheat the oven to 190°C (170°C Fan/375°F/Gas 5) and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • 8. Gently remove the cheesecloth and transfer the almond feta to the baking tray. Bake for 40 minutes, until lightly golden and the top is firm.

For the balsamic-roasted grapes

  • 1. Toss the grapes in the oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and thyme leaves, then transfer to a roasting dish.
  • 2. Roast in the hot oven for 15 minutes (ideally when the almond feta has been in the oven for 25 minutes, so they are both ready at the same time).
  • 3. Allow to cool, then transfer the baked almond feta to a serving dish, top with the roasted grapes and garnish with a few thyme sprigs. Serve with crusty bread.

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