The social media platform, TikTok, has been the source of many food trends since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the app’s huge popularity amongst younger generations, it has been responsible for sparking food trends such as the ‘Dalgona Coffee Challenge’ and ‘Banana Bread Hiatus’ during the first lockdown. Due to the application’s massive popularity, the influence it holds has no bounds.
This video has now amassed more than 3.2 million views.
Like clockwork, we are now observing another food trend which is taking over the hugely popular platform, which consists of a one-dish tomato and feta pasta. The recipe made its debut on the internet when Finnish food blogger Jenni Häyrinen posted it to her Instagram account in 2019.
The dish was popularised by American TikTok food blogger MacKenzie Smith (@grilledcheesesocial) who posted her version of the recipe to TikTok in January of 2021. This video has now amassed more than 3.2 million views. Videos made by other TikTok users showcasing their attempts at making the recipe have also garnered millions of views.
Jenni Häyrinen, on her food blog called ‘Lienessä’, has since written “The feta cheese sales went up 300% here [in Finland], the shops were running out of baked feta pasta ingredients.” She also revealed that the original blog post for the recipe has had more than 2.7 million views, a figure which truly reveals the popularity of this dish.
Being half-Greek myself, seeing feta sales skyrocket at such levels, filled me with some hope that this trend could salvage the Greek economy thanks to so many people buying Greek produce, so I decided that I should honour this recipe by trying it out for myself.
The beauty of this dish was that it requires minimal effort – a perfect meal for a university student to make
The recipe is incredibly simple and is as follows: add a handful of cherry tomatoes and a block of feta cheese to a baking tray with a generous amount of olive oil and season with some crushed garlic, red chilli flakes, salt and pepper. Place in the oven for 15 minutes at 200 degrees Celsius. Cook your pasta of choice and, once ready, mix the feta sauce and pasta together with a bit of basil. Many variations of the recipe have been created, with some users substituting feta for Boursin garlic and herb cheese, however I decided to follow the original recipe.
The combination of the tangy tomatoes and the salty feta cheese combined together, resulted in an overall slightly bitter dish
The beauty of this dish was that it requires minimal effort – a perfect meal for a university student to make. However, as a self-declared feta-addict who will put feta on anything from on a piece of toast with beans to on a pizza (I highly recommend the latter by the way), I was surprisingly very underwhelmed with the final result. The combination of the tangy tomatoes and the salty feta cheese combined together, resulted in an overall slightly bitter dish.
It appears as though most people would disagree with my opinion on this, however, with thousands of people flooding to Twitter to declare their love for this dish.
Made the feta pasta from TikTok and it is so good ? pic.twitter.com/Oy3sEgMKpG
— Gemma (@MissPYear2) February 27, 2021
You many have also noticed your local supermarket might have run out of feta cheese… Twitter users certainly have.
I haven’t been able to get feta cheese at the store for like 3 weeks now and I KNOW it’s because of that fuckin tiktok pasta
— caitie delaney (@caitiedelaney) February 25, 2021
Sold out of feta AND basil at my local grocery store. I HATE TIK TOK!
— Tyler Young (@ItsTylerYoung) February 4, 2021
Disregarding my opinion on the feta and tomato pasta dish, it appears as though the general consensus around it is very positive. However, it leads one to question whether this is simply an over-hyped trend that deserves the attention that it is receiving.
Why not make it and decide for yourself? Though, you may need to wait until your supermarket restocks feta cheese…
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