Ancho Tomato Baked Feta gleans its tempered kick from parched ancho chilies, the dried form of poblano peppers known for their smoky quality and sweet to moderate heat. This Mexican-Mediterranean hybrid dish is a fantastic saucy, and comforting, appetizer or meal on its own. Serve with crusty bread to sop up every last bit of the red sauce, or spoon over cooked grain.
Cheesy choices: If possible, compare labels and look for lower-sodium feta options. A ball of fresh mozzarella or bocconcini are great alternatives or try a block of medium-firm tofu and substitute agave syrup in place of the honey for a vegan-friendly dish.
- 2 dried ancho chile peppers
- 2 cups no-salt-added marinara or tomato sauce
- 1 garlic chopped
- 1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
- 2 tsp honey
- 14 oz block feta sliced in half
- 1 1/2 cups cooked or canned chickpeas
- 1/3 cup sliced black olives optional
- 1/3 cup chopped parsley
- 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- In bowl, place ancho chilies and cover with hot water. Let soak for 20 minutes, or until soft. Slice off stems, pour out most of the seeds, and place softened peppers in blender container along with 1/4 cup of the soaking water, marinara sauce, garlic, Italian seasoning, and honey; blend until smooth.
- Preheat oven to 350 F. In small casserole dish, place chili tomato sauce and nestle in feta, scooping some of the sauce over the cheese. Add chickpeas and olives, if using, to dish. Bake until bubbly around edges, about 25 minutes. Garnish with parsley and a drizzle of olive oil. Squeeze on lemon juice.
Per serving: 290 calories; 16 g protein; 17 g total fat (9 g sat. fat); 23 g total carbohydrates (9 g sugars, 6 g fiber); 555 mg sodium