2020 may have relegated Christmas office parties to history. Perhaps, offices too may be a thing of the past. But as we slowly emerge from our Covid-cocoons, get-togethers with family and friends are at the top of our Christmas wish list. Maybe if we’re all nice and not naughty, Santa might just grant us our wish.
It’s time to start lifting our cheese board and mezze plate game if only for the gram. Pre-prepared morsels work for both the time-poor and those who want to take a few shortcuts without compromising on flavour. Monjay Mezze sent us a scrumptious smorgasbord of finger food and dips to road test. And we did.
The Monjay Mezza range is made in Sydney’s Granville by the Taouk family. Their family’s traditional Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean recipes make for an instant party. Friends, family, a few well-chosen drops and no-one will want to go home. A well-planned platter or two can blur the lines between ‘drinks’ and dinner.
As well as the staples we all know and love – hummus, tahini, falafels and tzatziki, Monjay Mezza have some delicious surprises including hummus with roasted capsicum and jalapeno. This dip is 60% Chickpeas with tahini, red capsicum, garlic oil and salt. Excellent with veggie sticks – especially cucumber. Fetta, olive and oregano dip, a labneh with zaatar and salty, grilled halloumi all take things up a notch.
Monjay Mezza recommends baking their fresh falafel – traditional, sesame or spinach in the oven. With some tahini and hummus you can eat well and guilt-free – vegetarian, low-carb and delicious. Their frozen range includes Kibbi, Kafta as well as cheese puffs – fetta and ricotta in pastry and the lesser-known Sambousek (puff pastry stuffed with lamb, pinenuts and spices).
Add some cheat’s ‘cheffy flair’ to these traditional combos with cherry tomatoes on the vine, veggie chips, oven-roasted capsicum and flatbread chips. Dress your dips with pomegranate seeds for colour and pistachios for extra crunch.
Mixing it up during WFH
As we hurtle towards the end of the year, it can’t all be party, party, party. It’s easy to get into a rut while dining al desko every day. We’ve all had to get a lot more inventive to overcome the sameness of WFH. Maybe a falafel wrap to replace that daily peanut butter sandwich? Combining one of the three fresh falafel with their dips and a few veggies on a wrap and suddenly you’re day seems a little brighter.
The earthy flavours suit many keto and low-carb diets too. More than 2.5 million Australians are now eating meat-free. Nutrient-dense, plant-based proteins like chickpeas and broad beans are all the better with a bit of shoozing from lashings of garlic, onion, coriander, cumin and other Middle-Eastern spices.
The product ingredients and nutritional information are all on the website as well as some excellent ideas for pairing the dips and using them in recipes. We dredged chicken fillets in garlic dip before dunking in panko and it was gooood. Baked potatoes with Peri-Peri dip? Broccolini with marinated goat Feta?
The Monjay Mezza range is sold in IGA and Coles supermarkets as well as Harris Farm and good delis.
Disclaimer: TML was gifted a range of Monjay Mezza dips and finger food.