Tag Archive: savory


Oregano Labneh and Olive Oil | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

I opened the packaging and smelled. And it was like I was instantly transported to the Mediterranean shores. I feel the hot and dry air on my skin and breath the gentle sea breeze. The sun reaches the zenith. I hear the shrill sound of cicadas coming from the maquis and I am offered to taste beautiful dishes seasoned with aromatic oregano.

It’s all imaginary.
The truth is that I’ve never been to Sicily where this oregano originally comes from. My mind has woven my own experience and memories from my time in Puglia -the southernmost I’ve been in Italy- and documentaries I’ve seen on the renowned volcanic island of Sicily. Just the power of imagination. Simply triggered by a scent.

Dry Oregano | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi
Oregano Labneh | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Now, it’s your turn.
I invite you to pick one of these labneh balls coated in fragrant oregano and preserved in a delicate olive oil. I let you spread it on a flat bread and allow your senses appreciate the flavours and textures. There’s a chance that you too will travel for a short moment to sunny shores…

And speaking of seaside, Paprika and I will be away for a couple of days. I’ll surely share about our little break as soon as we are back.

Oregano Labneh and Olive Oil | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Oregano Labneh
Makes 6 to 8 balls

335g yogurt / 1 cup 1/2 yogurt
1/4 tsp sea salt
7 tbsp dry oregano
Olive oil

Place the yogurt in a muslin cloth and let it drain overnight or for several hours. Mix in the salt and adjust to your liking. With a teaspoon scoop yogurt and roll in the dry oregano to coat. They can be served right away with a drizzle of olive oil or placed in a jar filled with olive oil and kept in the fridge.



You Rockmelon !

Rockmelon Prosciutto and Rocket Salad | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

The sweet fragrance was promising.
After the first slice, we knew that it was a good pick.
Juicy and flavoursome rockmelon.
We ate half of it sliced and wrapped in Parma ham. A classic I like to indulge in when it’s summer.

Here’s a salad version completed with tasty rocket leaves and a balsamic vinaigrette. Pine nuts could be a good addition as well I think. For next time…

Rockmelon Close Up | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Since that very first rockmelon of the season, I’ve been slightly obsessed with it and made delicious and thirst-quenching smoothies.
And I’m thinking granita too. As soon as the sun will make its appearance again…

As a side note, the very first issue of Common Magazine is out. Common is a New Zealand periodical about art, literature, design and food, in which I’ve contributed with a couple of summer recipes. If you wish, you can support this publication and order it online.

Rockmelon Prosciutto and Rocket Salad | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Rockmelon, Parma Ham and Rocket Salad (For 2)

125g rocket leaves
Half rockmelon
6 to 8 parma ham slices
Handful pine nuts (optional)

4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper

Remove the seeds from the rockmelon. Scoop flesh with a melon baller or alternatively slice melon, cut out skin and dice the flesh.
Prepare the dressing by mixing all the ingredients to get an emulsion. Adjust seasoning to your liking. Pour over the rockmelon, rocket and parma slices. Serve with fresh crunchy bread.

Melon Parma Rocket Salad | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi


Roll Up

Tzatziki Rolls | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

It’s this time of year when we are all busy thinking Christmas. There’s the gift hunting session, the present wrapping time, the Christmas tree decoration and the menu planning…
I’m happy I’ve done the two first ones, but still need to craft the tree of this year… And for the food, I have some ideas. I’ve started to test some of them in the kitchen. And I’ll share with you soon the dessert I plan to make for this Christmas.

But for now, let’s start with the apéro.

Tzatziki Sandwich | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

I remember as a child when my sisters and I would gather around the table and prepare different canapés to be served as appetizer on Christmas eve dinner. They would look pretty, all laid on large trays, looking like an edible patch work.
I have kept this tradition of serving canapés for many years. Recently I’ve tried to bring variety as well. And that’s how these tzatziki rolls and mini sandwiches came in my mind.
Fresh, creamy and crunchy all at once they are easy to assemble.
I like how the small bites served with pre-dinner drinks can set the mood of the dinner to come. And I’m thinking seafood for the main…

Tzatziki Rolls | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi

Tzatziki Roll
Makes a dozen

2 small Lebanese cucumbers, ends cut off and then finely sliced (2-3mm) lengthwise.
330g yogurt, drained
1 small bunch of mint, rinsed and leaves finely chopped + extra leaves kept for garnish
1 garlic clove mashed or 1 big garlic spear head finely chopped
Salt and pepper

Lightly sprinkle salt over each side of cucumber slices and let them rest for 20 minutes. In a bowl mix together drained yogurt, chopped mint, garlic / garlic spear, salt and pepper. Rinse cucumber slices under running water and pat them dry. Lay cucumber stripe flat, scoop a teaspoon of yogurt, place it at the extremity of the stripe and roll. Fasten the roll with a toothpick and a mint leave. Keep on with the rest of cucumber slices and yogurt filling.

Tzatziki Sandwich | At Down Under | Viviane Perenyi