For the Whipped Feta
(makes approx. 1 cup)
6.5 ounces feta
1-2 tablespoons yogurt (see note)
Crumble feta into the bowl of a food processor, and add 1 tablespoon yogurt. Pulse the food processor to bring everything together, adding more yogurt and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Once it starts to thin out a bit, let it run for 20-30 seconds until smooth. Season to taste with salt if needed (be sure to taste first, since different types of feta have different levels of salt!). Leftovers will keep for 5 days or so in the fridge.
Note: the amount of liquid in feta varies by milk type and preparation method. You will likely need to loosen the cheese up a bit, which is why we call for yogurt here. If you feel like your cheese might have a higher water content and not need any yogurt, try running it in the machine without the addition to start, and add yogurt in as needed.
For the Garlic Chips
3-4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
⅓ cup olive oil
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, and line a plate with paper towels. Drop one slice of garlic into the oil to test if it’s hot. If it starts to sizzle and “swim”, it’s ready. Add the sliced garlic and cook, swirling the pan often, until the garlic is just beginning to turn a light golden brown (about 3–5 minutes). Transfer to the paper towel lined plate, lightly salt, and set aside to drain and cool. Reserve olive oil for another use (sauteing, in dressings, on bread, etc.), and store any leftovers in an airtight container lined with a paper towel for a few days.
For the Vegetables
6.5 ounces zucchini (approx. 1 medium), halved lengthwise
3.5 ounces shishito peppers, large ones cut in half lengthwise
2 tablespoons high-heat cooking oil (i.e. avocado or grapeseed)
4.5 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
A few thin slices of jalepeño or serrano chile, optional
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon honey
4-6 leaves shiso or basil, thinly sliced or torn
Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of oil, the zucchini, and a big pinch of salt. Cook 3-4 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Wipe out your pan with a paper towel, and return to the heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, the shishitos, and a big pinch of salt. Cook 3-5 minutes, turning the shishitos when they are blistering a golden on their skins. Remove from the heat, and put the peppers in a bowl. Slice your zucchini on the bias (diagonal) into ½ - ¾” pieces and add to the bowl with the shishitos, along with the halved tomatoes, sliced chile (if using), red wine vinegar, honey, half the herbs, and a big pinch of salt. Toss everything together to combine.
Spread 3-4 tablespoons of whipped feta onto a serving plate, and spoon the vegetables on top. Garnish the dish with a drizzle of olive oil and honey, sprinkle of flaky salt, the garlic chips, and the remaining herbs. Enjoy immediately, and serve with crackers or grilled bread to wipe up all the feta!