Monday, January 3, 2011

Spanakopita (spinach Pie)


spinach pie
My father is greek and when I make this dish it brings back wonderful childhood memories of lots of family, and lots and lots of food on big long tables!

There was nothing better than our big family get together's. We didn't need much of an excuse either. We didn't always wait for Christmas or new years either. We just loved being around each other.

Most of the food was made the previous day or night, spanakoptia, dolmades, a whole marinated and stuffed lamb (that took about 24hours to roast) and lots of cheese, olives, and salads.

I will never forget the smell of that old house. Aniseed, sesames seeds, fried cheese, lemon, cinnamon, oregano, and my yaya's (grandmother's) freshly baked bread. That's just a few smells wafting through the house on our big fat greek get together's. Now everyone had moved or grown up, or sadly passed away.

I hope to start my own big celebrations soon enough, with a little one on the way, I find myself wanting to create these special memories for him/her also.

This is my version of spanakopita. 

Ingredients
2 x 250 grams frozen spinach, you can use fresh spinach
10 shallots
1 bunch fresh parsley
1 bunch fresh dill
250 grams cottage cheese
200 grams feta
200 grams kefalograviera cheese, or you could use parmesan
5 eggs
1 tablespoon olive oil
12 sheets filo pastry
100 grams butter melted
salt and pepper

To assemble the pie
1. Chop the shallots, dill and parsley roughly. Put the lot into a fry pan and start to fry in the oil, just on medium heat is fine.
2. Add the frozen spinach. Fry the greens till there is no water left and it is quite dry, do not colour mixture. Meanwhile pre-heat the oven to 180c. Once you have finished frying, put the mix into a large bowl to cool slightly.
3. Start on the filo pastry. Brush a little melted butter on the bottom of a baking dish and place one filo sheet on top. Brush again with butter and place another sheet of filo, repeat using 6 all together. Keep the remaining sheets of filo covered with a tea towel so they don't dry out.
4. Add the cottage cheese, feta ( just crumble that with your fingers,)  and grated kefalograviera, to the spinach mixture, and give it a good stir. Give it a taste and add salt and pepper to taste.
5. Mix the 5 eggs in a separate bowl and then add them also to the spinach, mixing really well. Put spinach mixture into the pie dish.
6. Place a sheet of filo on top of the mix, then butter. Repeat until all 6 sheets are used. Brush butter on top of the pie. And tuck the edges in, sort of rolling them, it doesn't have to be perfect.
7. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown and puffed up a little, and the pastry is crispy.

Delicious warm or cold. Even better the next day!

7 comments:

  1. mmm I can smell it now! I absolutely love spanakopita! Thanks for sharing your recipe. I'm sure you'll create many lovely memories for you and your little one :)
    Heidi xo

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  2. Congratulations!!! Oh, what fabulous, exciting, wonderful news. I'm so happy for you :) I'm sorry I missed the anouncement post - but please consider this my heartfelt a million times applause and hugs and happiness comment! :D

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  3. No worries Hannah! I haven't been on the blog for ages, and understand that most would have thought i'd given up on it!

    BTW I love your blog :)

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  4. Big congratulations on your wonderful news! That is really fantastic and I think your 2011 is definitely going to be a special one :)

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  5. YUM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! xxxxxxx

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  6. Thanks Lorraine, i think 2011 is really going to be exciting!

    Ms S, it was really yum! It's one of my absolute favourite greek dishes!

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  7. Looks great! One day I'll have to try and make it

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