September 10, 2013


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This Greek take on bruschetta is so popular on the isle of Crete, it is even commemorated on postcards. Dakos are healthfully delicious but way messy, so give each one its own plate. The Cretans drizzle theirs with even more olive oil. You can, too.

     Dakos are messy, but worth it. Credit: Susan Sampson

2 barley rusks
1 very ripe tomato, cored, halved lengthwise
Sea salt to taste
2 oz (60 g) fresh mizithra cheese or goat’s milk ricotta
Dried oregano to taste
2 tbsp (30 mL) extra virgin olive oil
4 to 6 black or green olives, pitted

Quickly dip each rusk in bowl of cold water, shake and place on serving plate.

Using large holes of box grater, grate tomato half over each rusk, discarding skin left at end. Sprinkle with salt. Crumble cheese evenly overtop. Sprinkle with oregano. Drizzle with oil. Place olives overtop. Let sit 5 minutes, or until rusks absorb some juices from tomato.

Makes 2 servings.

Shopping Cart: Fresh mizithra cheese is the traditional choice for Dakos, but it’s hard to find here. You can substitute goat’s milk ricotta. Avoid cow’s milk ricotta; it’s too bland for Dakos. A soft feta would also work, but is saltier and tangier than the cheese the Cretans use to make their Dakos. Greek grocery stores sell rusks made from rustic barley bread. They are supposed to be hard, so don’t be alarmed.