Cheat’s Greek Spinach Pies

I wrote a couple of Cheat’s Italian recipes a few years ago that I’d never serve to an Italian. My family, on the other hand, keeps eating them over and over again. I must admit that I consistently use similarly non-authentic recipes for a range of other national cuisines. I’d never show – or serve – today’s recipe to my Greek friends, but I’d be happy to eat this most any day of the week.

The best part is that most of the ingredients come from the freezer: frozen spinach and frozen filo are both godsends and mean that this can pretty much be ready to go at any time. I’ve tried substituting fresh spring onion and fresh dill for the herbs I use here, but I think I prefer this version.

Cheat’s Spanikopita

  • 1.2 kg frozen spinach
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 1 smaller bunch fresh mint
  • 2 medium brown onions
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 blocks feta  (400-500 grams)
  • 1 packet of frozen filo pastry
  • olive and canola oil
  • 4 eggs

Defrost the filo in the fridge. Defrost the spinach in a colander. Once the spinach is defrosted, squeeze as much liquid out as possible and chop roughly. Chop the onion and saute it with the crushed garlic in some olive oil until softened. Add the spinach to the onion and cook until bubbling and starting to dry up. Throw in the herbs and stir. Allow this mixture to cool a little before stirring in the crumbled feta and three beaten eggs.

To make the triangular pies, bush half a sheet of file with canola oil and fold the unbuttered side over the top. Place a good dollop of mixture in the top left-hand corner of the folded sheet, bush the rest of that surface with more oil, then fold the pie on top of itself in the shape of a right-angled isosceles triangle. Continue folding.

Brush the top of each pie with egg wash and sprinkle with seeds if you have any.  Bake for 20 minutes or until golden on both sides. The pies can be frozen and baked straight from the freezer for about 40 minutes.

spinach pie

 

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