the tardy recipe (spanakopitakia)

The following recipe has my own added touch of parmesan cheese, which deviates from the traditional Greek version of exclusively using feta cheese. Filo pastry can be bought from any Greek or Middle Eastern shop, but frozen filo is becoming more common at some of the chain supermarkets.

200g feta cheese crumbled
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 kg fresh spinach, washed, strained, and chopped
4 spring onions, washed and finely chopped
2 large eggs, beaten (you may want to go 3 if you want a little heavier)
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill (I am not a fan of parsley in spinach pies, just dill)
2/3 cup melted organic butter
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup milk
12 sheets of filo pastry, thawed if frozen
1 tbsp of rice (optional)
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius.

Thoroughly clean fresh spinach with cold water. Drain by squeezing spinach to get the water out, and then dry with a paper towel. Break off the stalks of the spinach and keep the spinach leaves. Chop the leaves finely.

Place the chopped spinach along with the onions, cheeses, dill and rice in a large glass bowl. Mix with a fork, and pour eggs and olive oil. Add the pepper (so much better to add freshly ground), and mix well.

Take out filo pastry out of its plastic wrap and unfold.  Cut the pastry sheets in strips about 2x12 inches. Keep them stacked one on top of the other to prevent them from drying (very important).

Brush a strip of phyllo with melted butter, lay another strip on top and brush it as well. Put one big teaspoon of the filling on the short end of the strip (on your right), facing you, and fold over one corner to make a triangle. Keep folding pastry strip from side to side in the shape of a triangle until the entire pastry strip covers the filling. What you end up is a nice triangular pie. Do this until you have used your entire filling. You probably will end up with around 18 pies.

Add the pies on a baking sheet (you'll need probably 2 trays), and brush each pie with milk. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until golden and crispy.

I like the pies to cool for about 10-15 minutes before I serve them. They are also unbelievable at room temperature. You can freeze afterwards for months, and they also keeps well in the refrigerator for about 3 days.


Anonymous said...

Parmeasan? I don't know how I'm liking that.. Tha ginei lisa i pita... no? I would suggest something a little less salty. Elisavet uses feta and she gets the ages ricotta, grates it and adds it. It adds just enough salt without overpowering it. I've done it and it's really yummm.
You should post your momma's almond cookies.. those are the bomb!!! :)

Yannis said...

Maria, parmesan works amazingly well. So does Ricotta. I don't even really add salt to the filling ever. Trust me. Try it out.

my mom's almond cookies? which ones re?

Sophie said...

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Yannis said...

definitely Sophie.....cool :)