Bite-sized young manchego sitting in a bowl of olive oil and spices has been my go-to for five years now…and I like it even better with a few strips of orange zest, fresh herbs, honey, and lightly smashed cloves of garlic. Those cloves soften up and become addictively sweet, AND 👏 THAT 👏 OIL 👏, totally meant for dipping so don’t forget the bread. I don’t even know which part of this is my favorite. I’ll let you decide.
Adding in some dried wild thyme flowers is not necessary, but I have them and I love how peppery they are. You can totally play with the spices if you’d like! This recipe is flexible. Bring it to your next picnic or give it as a gift!
Citrus Marinated Manchego
- 7 oz young manchego cheese 3-6 months
- 2 tspn Aleppo pepper (or other red pepper, to taste)
- 3/4 tspn cumin seeds
- 1/2 tspn ground coriander
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 4-5 strips zest from an orange
- 2 cloves garlic smashed into pieces
- 1 bushy sprig of thyme or rosemary
- 1/4 tspn dried wild thyme flowers, crushed optional
- 1 tspn honey
- Break a part your manchego into bite-sized pieces and place them into a jar or bowl that comes with a lid. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan set over low heat, gently toast your spices, about 1 minute, til fragrant. Then pour in olive oil, zest, garlic, sprig, and honey. Keep it on low and allow it to barely bubble up for about 5 minutes, then let cool completely before adding it into the jar or bowl full of cheese.
- Refrigerate over night or for at least 24 hours before serving.
- Bring it to room temp before serving.