Sunday, April 15, 2012

Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

It's Sunday, and I was going to wait till tomorrow to do another post but I feel like I'm just really prolonging it, and trying to "milk" my last post to get more comment?...or maybe I should have replied on my blog to all? I just don't know which would be the right thing to do. Also...I wish I could just whip-up some cakes, cupcakes, or throw in some various different things to brighten up my blog; but honestly, I don't have the time, or the energy to be so ambitious like that. I don't know how others can do a different post just about every day, and come of with the most amazing things!
When I made my Hungarian Sour Cherry Strudel, I mentioned making Spanakopita, and I finally did make it. You can easily double up on the pastry sheets...they are so, so, thin; will not make one bit of difference to use more. Some recipes call for 6 sheets (bottom and top) with filling in the middle, as for the strudel did, but for the Spanakopita, you can easily use 12 each, bottom and top, because it needs to hold the amazing filling, which I totally adapted from the basic recipe I used.
One important advise when making the Spanakopita. DO NOT use fresh...unless you're willing to break your "food budget!" You would need at least 5 bags of it, which would cost about $3.99 each, as opposed to the chopped frozen spinach; 2- 10oz. frozen chopped spinach, less than $2.00 each, and you get a lot, and I mean, a lot of filling when mixed up with the cheeses, and eggs. If you are making the spinach triangle appetizers, then you probably would need about 2 bags of the fresh spinach, which is more affordable.

This is a classic Greek favorite pie than can be served as an appetizer, or side dish, or even a main dish with a side of salad. The main ingredients of course are; Phyllo (fillo) pastry dough, spinach, and Feta cheese. You can variate the herbs such as mint, parsley, or dill. I used a mixture of fresh mint, and fresh parsley.Also, you can add a different cheese with the Feta... as for the onions, you can use scallions, or a sweet mild onion.

Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)
adapted from All Recipes.com
Ingredients:
3 tablespoons olive oil
 I used 1 stick butter 4 ozs=113.4g (melted)
1 large sweet onion, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped (omitted that)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 pounds spinach, rinsed and chopped
2- 10 oz. chopped frozen spinach, thawed
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
a handful of chopped fresh mint
No salt needed, just freshly ground pepper, and freshly grated nutmeg added in to the cheeses 
2 eggs, lightly beaten
 1- 8 oz, package Philadelphia Cream Cheese
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 cups crumbled feta cheese
8 sheets phyllo dough...(omit this)
 24 sheets total...12 for bottom & 12 for top
1/4 cup olive oil
Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly oil a 9x9 inch square baking pan.I used a 9x11 or 9x13inch is OK to use.
2. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onion, green onions and garlic, until soft and lightly browned. Stir in spinach and parsley, and continue to saute until spinach is limp, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
3. In a medium bowl, mix together eggs, ricotta, and feta. Stir in spinach mixture. Lay 1 sheet of phyllo dough in prepared baking pan, and brush lightly with olive oil. Lay another sheet of phyllo dough on top, brush with olive oil, and repeat process with two more sheets of phyllo. The sheets will overlap the pan. Spread spinach and cheese mixture into pan and fold overhanging dough over filling. Brush with oil, then layer remaining 4 sheets of phyllo dough, brushing each with oil. Tuck overhanging dough into pan to seal filling.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, until golden brown. Cut into squares and serve while hot.Bake for at least 45 minutes with the extra sheets. Before you bake the Spanakopita, with a sharp knife, score the pieces but do not cut through (only the top few layers) This makes it easier to cut, when finished baking!
Note: I can't begin to tell you how incredible flaky, and super delicious the Spanakopita was.This is an example how I adapt my recipes. Cannot always remember the ingredients, even though I remember the basic method. It would be nice to see other food bloggers mentioning at least SOME type of source where they got their recipe, or the idea from. Sometimes, when I eat out and a certain type of dish really inspires me, I even ask the chef if he would please just give me an idea of what ingredients are used, and I will create my own. Googling is the best and less troublesome way to get creative with a certain recipe, and make it your own.

Unless you have some old "hand-me-down" recipe from family, I seriously doubt that they mention any source because it's usually handed down to them by a family member, or friend, and those are the best KIND!

Also, I have to be honest with you, I practically given up on my Weight Watchers now...even though I'm still paying for the online program...have gained back 5 lbs of my 15 lbs weight loss over the last month (especially the holidays) ...too ashamed to go for a "weigh-in"...just went back to the gym in one month of absence, not counting points right now...shame, shame. I didn't just fall off the "wagon"...the wagon kind of rolled over me! All-in-all, I feel really good, my cat Prince is still alive (eating me out of house and home)...(although skin and bones)...oh, yes! He even eats from my roasted chicken, as long as it's white meat and cut up in tiny pieces. Poor old little guy, almost 20 now. Just wanted to let you in on the latest!
Have a wonderful Sunday!
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49 comments:

  1. De jó:) tetszik nagyon, szeretjük a spenótot. Így pitében még nem ettem, de ki fogom próbálni:) Csodásak a fotók is:)

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  2. It looks delicious...and you will have no regrets about all you are doing for Prince...
    You look wonderful...don't worry if you haven't lost all of what you wanted...it will happen when you want it to...take care of yourself!!!

    Have some tea and relax with a book!!

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  3. I love this but still don't think I could make it, I just don't have your gift,I write a post almost every day, I love doing it but I'm sue people must get tired of me!, lol, I like to read your blog and even just what you did in the day is intertesting, but no one should feel they must do a post everyday, if its a chore its not fun!

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  4. I meant sure not sue, I have never sued any people!!! ha ha ha

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  5. Már volt szerencsém ilyet enni egyszer, nagyon finom:) A tiéd is irtó guszta, nagyon tetszik:) Pici koromtól a spenót a kedvencem, most is. Sosem értettem a többi gyereket, milrt útálják. Az én gyerekeim is szeretik:)Az ünnepek alatt én is felszedtem pár kilót, most teljes életmódváltásba kezdek, remélem sikerül:)Szép hetet kívánok Neked:)

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  6. I saw Ricotta then phyllo who could go wrong what a great greek pie ... looks absolutely wonderful... I can just taste the delicious filling... I love spinach even in a sandwich this is wonderful!

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  7. I have always wanted to make this, and yours looks so good! I have it bookmarked and I like your tips too! Thanks! As for posting everyday I can't do that and I feel like I miss a lot when others do post everyday...I just can't keep up. I sure don't keep it up for the comments to grow hehe! but that's an idea....hmmm... :) The baked goods are pretty but i don't bake so I like your blog just the way it is...it's you after all! Love it!!

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  8. Oh my goodness! How gorgeous is that spanakopita! I have never tried making it, but it looks fantastic, Elisabeth! I think I must have missed a few of your earlier posts... sorry about that! I am so behind on my commenting and am barely getting one post out a week! Thanks for sharing this one, Elisabeth! It's one of my new favorite posts!

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  9. I love it, and you are right, the original recipe is handed down from generation to generation, and every family has it's own trick. In our family it's dill, dry and fresh. I haven't made it in a long time, thanks for the reminder. When you cook weight loss is always an issue. That's why I don't bake that often to keep myself in shape...:)

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  10. This IS truly amazing Elisabeth. Be your fabulous self, never mind who does what or how much.

    PS. I will be slowing down soon. Today my hubby ate lunch out of a can. The quick supper we had tells a similar tale. I am starting on several sewing projects so my compulsive nature will take me on a different path for a while. I have been planning and cutting out patterns and measuring today. Once Zsuzsa’s sweatshop is in full operation, I won’t have time to cook. hahaha

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  11. Nagyon guszta, spenótot csak főzelékként szoktam elkészíteni. Csodás a pitéd, mintha mákos süti lenne :)

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  12. I love spanakopita. I used to have a Greek flatmate and her mom made some delicious spanakopita when she visits. I have yet to bake them myself, only because filo pastry isn't available at my local grocery store. I must look around somewhere else.
    Your spanakopita looks so scrumptious Elisabeth. Thanks for sharing your tips. I think using frozen spinach do make more sense rather than fresh one .

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  13. Oh Elisabeth this looks great! Would love to try them one day. I've already bookmarked it :D. And why worry abt writing (or not) a post daily. We want quality gal who cares for quantity!!

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  14. Elizabeth, This looks fabulous! I love greek spinach pie, and love your take on the recipe…sounds delicious!

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  15. Lovely pie! And good tip with the spinach...I'm not a fan of frozen but I reckon it wouldn't matter in this dish since you've got all the delicious pastry :)

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  16. This is something I never had, Wish to grab your plate. :)
    I must say you did a wonderful job, very delicate and perfectly baked pie.
    I want to prepare something like you, but I'm scared. It's looks very tedious task.

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  17. Hi Elisabeth, your spinach pie look extremely good, love the flaky pastry. It's very well baked and the nice color too. Wish I can have some right now,LOL

    Oh.. am so glad to hear about your prince. Keep finger cross he will be okay.It's good that he is eating well.

    Keep up your workout in the gym, 3 to 4 times a week is sufficient enough. Take care, my dear.

    Have a nice week ahead. *hugs*
    With warm regards

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  18. bella, this spanikopita looks SO SO SO SO SOOOOO good. I just made some for Easter, I use green onions, sweet onion and flat leaf parsley in mine with the fresh spinach (they have had big sales here, 1.99 for a large bag of spinach!) and cream cheese too - i love that you used mint, and ricotta in there - so fantastic - you ROCK bella! now don't you beat yourself up over gaining back 5 lbs....we all fall off the wagon, I fell off too, but we just get back on! And that's what I'm going to do starting TODAY....you keep at it bella, back on that wagon! and precious Prince...heehee...

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  19. I wasn't sure how you could even begin to top your last post...! Good choice with spanikopita - another one of my favourites. In fact, I had some at my daughter's apartment this past week - I'd popped by to help her with painting her bedroom and she surprised me - so yummy :) Yours look so rich and flaky - I'm certain they were amazing.

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  20. Spanakopita looks delicious Elisabeth. I don't worry about too much posting as you know finding some time is difficult with two little kids.

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  21. this looks delicious! i've never made spanakopita, but i think i need to change that! looks great!

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  22. This is one of my favorite things in the world! I have never tried to make it before, so will have to bookmark it :)
    Hope you had a great weekend and lovely week ahead :)

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  23. Wow this looks delicious! I am the biggest fan of Greek food, and I love Greek Spinach Pie! I have never thought of making this before, but now I've your recipe, I'll definitely try to cook this sometime! P.S Thanks for the great tips on using frozen spinach!

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  24. This is exactly what I am looking for!

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  25. Oh Elisabeth, what gorgeous spanakopita! I love it and I really love your adaptation! My mouth is watering, truly...the photo's are beautiful ~ jumping out at me! I have to make this soon!

    I know what you mean about coming up with posts. Sometimes I need a break...I've slowed down a bit lately, but hope the creative nerve will spark again soon. I hope your Easter was wonderful. xoxo

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  26. I can't believe my eyes.. Spanakopita!! My favourite and the the phyllo pastry is absolutely light and flakey.. LOVE it.. but am loving it more so with the filling.. Your photos are inviting me to take a bite out of this pie.. Delish!!! hope you're well and huggss..

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  27. I have never had spanakopita before. It sounds and looks delicious!

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  28. Kedves Elisabeth,
    This gorgeous spanakopita does look perfect with the delicate crisp phyllo and the juicy filling. We just love your scrumptious recipes.
    Sok szeretattel es igazán nagyon köszönjuk a figyelmességedet. Elnézést a regisztrálás miatt, es reméljuk hogy muködni fog legközelebb :)
    Judit és Corina

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  29. Prefect looking fabulous spanakopita..i dnt mind having some rite now..

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  30. Oh, my. So tempting and gorgeous, Lizzie!!! And I know these taste as amazing as they look. I must put this on my baking list...I've made lots of baklava but never spanakopita. Thanks for the inspiration, my friend!!! xo

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  31. This is one of my all time favorites. I have made it a few times but mine has never looked at perfectly beautiful as yours. Wonderful.

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  32. I ate the similar Pie at the Victoria market Melboune, love it. I must try this one day. Thanks for the inspiration .

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  33. i've always wanted to try making spanakopita! i haven't ever used phyllo dough before, only puff pastry, but now i am intrigued to try.

    awww do not beat yourself up for the weight watchers! just add a small workout each day and make one healthy choice each day, and it will happen naturally.

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  34. Elisabeth, ez a spenótos pite nagyon kedvemre való. Csodálatosak a fotók, és olyan élethű, hogy kedvem lenne rögtön beleharapni. Pitetésztával már többször sütöttem, de fillo tésztával még nem, így mindenképpen kifogom próbálni.
    Válaszoltam a leveledre, melyet e-mail-ben küldtél, remélem megkaptad. Puszillak

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  35. haha..i find it cute when you say ' milk' your post to get more comments!well for me 'm doing it like 2 posts per week..still depends becos i'm really lazy to write and i dont think i'm good at writing a post! wow, you actually lost 15lbs earlier? that's really a lot! i guess just cutting down on some meat will do fine. your pie is really flaky indeed! enjoy your day!

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  36. Spinach and feta cheese is a very yummy combo ;-)

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  37. I always love spinach and feta and these spanakopita are just terrific!
    Relax yourself and don't stress yourself if you can't post bi-weekly..this should be something more about fun rather than responsibility.
    It's market day over here and I am going to get some succulent plants, maybe just cactus, so my 3 cats wouldn't dare to touch them again.
    Eli, I wish you a most wonderful and and relaxing day!
    Angie

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  38. Ciao Elisabeth, did I already told you I love the new look of your blog??? Complimenti! And this spanakopita!!! Wonderful pictures, wonderful recipes.

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  39. Thank you my friends so much; for all your sweet, kind, and inspirational comments. To think I was so concerned about not posting often enough...my usual 3 times a week fell short to twice a week, and now I will not be able to cook, or bake something to post about...trying to heal both of my injured hands. Not to worry, I will get back on board by the next 10 days!
    I truly appreciate your kindness, and support.
    Hugs, to all!
    Elisabeth

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  40. this is my favourite take away food (not mentioning gyros) when I am in Greece, thanks for reminding me about this summer delight:)

    Life and travelling
    Cooking

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  41. Ismerősöm ott él Görögországban évek óta, ő szokott blogolni görög pitéket, imádom! A fotó szuper és nagyon finom!!!!!

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  42. Spanakopita is a staple in Greece! I love it and I make it very often just like any decent Greek housewife! Your spanakopita tweak looks delicious! Just to give you some information regarding spanakopita, the original one doesn't contain any cheese other than feta. We do not put garlic, parsley, nutmeg or mint. But we do put fresh dill. In the baking process we put half of the phyllo sheets on the bottom, we throw the sauted spinach and the cheese and we cover with the rest of phyllo.There are many variations of spanakopita in the net, but the original is the one I gave you. Nevertheless, all variations are tasty including yours Elizabeth!

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  43. Katerina-thanks for clarifying the method of the Spanakopita ingredients. Although, I followed the same method with the phyllo dough...half on the bottom, the filling in the middle, and the other half on the top...I just variated the filling by adding a little garlic for flavor...did not have fresh dill at home, and I did have fresh mint, and fresh parsley, which actually added more to the flavor. As for adding other cheeses to the FETA, that just made it creamier, and more flavorful...that's all!

    Thanks for the tip...which I actually knew, but wanted to try something different:DDD

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  44. I have never made this from scratch, and I don't know why! I will be making this soon! I absolutely love every ingredient in this! yummy!!

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  45. My belly is going to need to make this pronto!

    Looks so good. Can't wait to try it!

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  46. It's very nice, i love your blog
    If you want,i waiting for you in my blog
    http://moodofmodeandbeauty.blogspot.it/

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  47. This comment has been removed by the author.

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