Jenny, who is Panos mom (and Panos is Arkensen’s best friend) had agreed to show me how to make a Greek dish a few months ago. Jenny was very busy and only until now she has the time to show me. Jenny is a Canadian and her husband is Greek. Jenny lived in Greece during her early marriage and she learned to make Greek dishes during her stay there.
The dish which Jenny showed me is called Spanakotyropita, The word Spanakotyropita comes from the Greek word spanaki (spinach); tiri (cheese); and pita which is a hand held snack.
Other pitas which you may be familiar with are the round cooked dough type typically filled with cooked meat, onions, tomatoes and a dab of tzatziki and are often served at Greek festivals or tavernas.
- two packages frozen chopped spinach
- one package phyllo pastry (in the Grocer’s freezer section next to frozen pie/pastry shells)
- approximately 1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons extra virgin cold-pressed olive oil or vegetable oil
- one large cooking onion or 1 leek, rough chopped and sauteed or 1 bunch of fresh green onions which can be added directly to the spinach.
- 1 teaspoon bouillon (powder form, not cubes)
- 1/2 fresh lemon
- 1 large sprig of fresh dill or approximately 1 tablespoon of dry dill
- 1 teaspoon salt and ground pepper (or according to taste)
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan chesse
- 1 package (1/2 lb) Greek style feta cheese
- 3 or 4 large eggs
The night before preparing this dish, remove your phyllo pastry and two packages of frozen chopped spinach from the freezer and defrost them in the refrigerator for use the next day. Place the frozen spinach in a container so they do not leak in your refrigerator as they defrost.
Prepare the spinach as per instructions on the packages. Make sure you drain the spinach thoroughly prior to mixing them into the filling as excess moisture is pita’s worst enemy!.
Preheat the oven to 375F.
Do not store the Spanakotyropita in a sealed container as they will become soft and soggy. If you need to bring them for a potluck party or social gathering, pack them in a non-sealed container after they have cooled down or just covered the container lightly with a paper towel.
Jenny, thank you so much for sharing the recipe with me. We (including Arkensen and Nanzaro) love it and I will make it for Ben when he returns home.
Categorized Under: Pastry