Tuesday, 22 October 2013 21:47

Mediterranean inspiration - by chef Stephanos Chrysanthou

I obviously cook a lot for myself and for Mary’s Dinner Club - and sometimes just ‘for my camera’, but actually know very few ‘real chefs’ whose life mission is cooking. I do follow them via social media though and that’s how I met Chef Stephanos Chrysanthou - a truly inspiring, very passionate, authentic and down-to-earth chef, who readily found time in his busy schedule to meet up for a coffee with me.

We have since stayed in touch and I feel truly honored to be able to share one of Stephano’s wonderful recipes here – a beautiful Μediterranean cheese salad with herbal honey vinaigrette.

The 'ingredients' of Stephano Chrysanthou's Mediteranean inspired career 

Stephanos Chrysanthou was born in Nicosia, Cyprus. He started his studies in Nicosia at the Hotel & Catering Institute in 1982 and then he moved to the United States of America. He graduated from the French Culinary Institute in New York City and was taught by Master chef Jacques Pepin, a celebrity chef.

His experience in America was decisive for his future. Returning to Cyprus in 1993 he worked at the best 5-star hotel facilities, and created his own style in cooking. Stephanos is a proud exponent of the Mediterranean diet and has always been fascinated by it; he considers it the healthiest and tastiest in the world.

In 2009 Stepahnos decided to embark on a new journey and began working as Executive chef atUptown Square Ltd in Limassol, a group of restaurants: Chesters Restaurant and PubZen RoomChi Lounge - a fine dining Chinese restaurant, and Estilo Tapas - a fusion upscale tapas.

Since March 2012 he is working as a Partner at Pioneer Hospitality Consultants Limited, a newly established company which provides consultancy services in the food and beverage industry in service and quality.

Stephanos is also presenting a morning show called Kali Sas Mera from RIK 1 - The Mediterranean diet on Cyprus national television.  Stephanos Chrysanthou published two books dedicated exclusively to the Mediterranean diet: "Modern Mediterranean Flavours" in 2004 and "Classic recipes in a new way" in April 2011. Many of his recipes are published in prestigious magazines and other printed media, spreading his love for the Mediterranean cuisine.

Μediterranean cheese salad with herbal honey vinaigrette by Stephanos Chrysanthou

Serves  5

  • 180 grs cream cheese
  • 180 grs feta cheese
  • 120 grs Local anari goats cheese (or Chevre )

For the outside crust ofthe cheese balls

Mixture of paprika / chopped walnuts and pine nuts / chopped dill and mint / sesame and lemon thyme

For the salad 

Mixed green salad with roasted bell peppers and cherry tomatoes, served in a phyllo nest

For the vinaigrette

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup apple vinegar
  • 1 Tblsp  apple juice
  • 1 Tblsp honey
  • 1tsp French mustard
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • A little salt & pepper
  • Thyme and mixed homemade dried herbs

Method of preparation

In a bowl mix the 3 kinds  of cheese and season. Then form them into small balls of 1 inch diameter. Prepare the different mixtures for the crust

Paprika / chopped walnuts and pine nuts / Mixture of fresh mint and mint / fresh thyme blended in fresh bread crumbs and fresh parsley .

For the vinaigrette

Mix the honey in a bowl with the mustard, apple juice, apple vinegar, and keep mixing while adding the olive oil. Add the homemade dry herbs ( personally I make it by sun drying all my favourite ones i.e. fresh oregano, lemon thyme, kiouli, mint, louiza, sage, etc. ) Then I keep them in a sealed container.

To serve

Mix the salad with the dressing and top up with the cheese balls, the roasted pepper and cherry tomatoes. Serve in a philo nest (butter it and slow cook it in any shape you like 175 degrees for about 8 minutes).

Mary Anglberger

I’ve been travelling the world for over 20 years teaching English and am now taking time to follow my passion for photography and writing. I want to share all the things, events and people that have inspired and inspire me and spread those positive vibes all around.

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