There’s a Greek restaurant just off the Harrow Road called Tsiakkos and Charcoal which is one of my all-time favourite places to spend an evening. It’s a dingy, spit-and-sawdust sort of place – a bike leaned up against a wall, the owner sitting at his laptop messing around on iTunes, toilets you don’t want to inspect too closely…it is not Chiltern Firehouse. But it’s perfect. Mostly because of the food – kleftiko that relents at the smallest nudge from a spoon, bright and sparkling sea bream, slow burnt pork that crackles with the heat of the grill.
Best of all though is the feta salad. Instead of the miserly chunks of the stuff in your standard Greek salad, this arrives with a vast, tomb-like slab of feta dumped on top of the distracting vegetable goings-on. It’s marvelous. For a feta-loving glutton like me it’s the perfect sort of dish.
But this is Great British Chefs, and some refinement is needed. Feta goes very well indeed with radishes, and given a) this is a series about pairing ingredients and b) spring = radishes, it seemed like a good thing to do. I’m particularly into roasting radishes at the moment, so that’s what I’ve done here.
Serve as a side dish or a starter with warm pitta bread.