Monday, June 25, 2012

# 4 Greek spinach pie - Spanakopita

spanakopita - greek spinach pie recipe

After my adventure in Turkmenistan I decided to go to Greece for Spanakopita! In my employed past I actually went to Greece a couple of times, and every time I was amazed by the food. I remember vividly the first time I had feta cheese
in Greece. It was melting on my tongue, nothing like any feta I had ever eaten before.. Oh, the delight! Yum!

What makes feta taste even better is spinach, it makes a marvelous combination of tangy, salty and slight bitterness. This pie brings out he best of that combination. It is one of my favorite recipes of all time. It looks great and it tastes even better! It's quite a show stopper, and a great way to impress your friends at a dinner party [or a date ;-)]. Trust me..don't make it if you are alone for the night or you are most likely to overindulge on half the pie, like I just did..[and then you'll never get that date ;-)]

spinach for our pie

I adapted this recipe from Celia Brooks Browns World Vegetarian Classics, by far my favorite cookbook. [No I'm not getting paid to say this I actually love this book].

A common problem with baking spinach pies is water coming out of the spinach, leaving you with a soggy uncooked crust. This recipe deals with that in a very effective way which can be used for all different types of spinach pies. There's a tea towel squeezing trick and it includes uncooked rice in the filling. As you bake the pie the rice will absorb the excess water enabling your pie crust to become nice and crispy!

This recipe uses ready made filo pastry, if you want to make the dough from scratch check this video.

delicious greek spinach pie - spanakopita

500 gr/ 1 lb spinach
3 spring onions
1 tablespoon olive oil
150 g/ 5 oz/ 11 tablespoons cottage cheese
250 g/ 9 oz feta cheese
2 tablespoons dill
2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons of rice
salt & pepper

7 big sheets of filo pastry or 14 small sheets
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 1/2 tablespoon / 50 g butter

ovendish 30 x 20 cm / 8 x 10 inch

wash the spinach

Preheat the oven at 180 C/ 355 F/gas mark 3

Wash the spinach & remove the stems

fry the green onion

chop the spring onion (you can use both the white & green)

fry them in 1 tbsp of olive oil on a medium heat

wilted spinach

Add the spinach and fry until wilted

Then set aside to cool

crumbled feta and dill

In the meanwhile..

crumble the feta
chop the parsley and dill

mix together with the cottage cheese

drain the spinach

Drain the spinach

press water out of the spinach with a spoon

trick getting water out of spinach

To get more water out place the spinach in the middle of a clean tea towel, then twist the towel

[Please don't use a white towel, you will not get the green stain out..]

trick removing water from spinach

The spinach is now dry and pressed together, almost looking like a

Cut the spinach by cutting off slices
spinach and feta pie filling

Mix the spinach trough the cheese mixture

Season to taste with salt & pepper  [you won't need a lot of salt, since the feta is very salty already]

Add the raw rice
butter and oil

The filling is done and now you start preparing the dough.

Melt the butter [I find it easiest in the microwave]

Mix with 3 tbspn of olive oil

buttering the ovendish

Use a little bit of this mixture to butter your ovendish

layering filo pastry

Cut the pastry to fit the ovendish
[as you can see I didn't do a great job here..]

Put a layer of filopastry down, brush the butter/oil mixture over it
then put the next layer down & brush it, until you've put down all the 7 layers

filling the spanakopita

Cover this with the cheese & spinach mixture
top dough on spanakopita

Cover with filo pastry and brush with the butter/oil mixture [same way you did before] until you've done 7 layers
cutting the spinach pie

With a sharp knife, cut this all the way trough the pie before baking
you can make diamonds or squares

[for some reason a diamond shape always brings the wow-factor to this pie]
place spinach pie in the oven

Place the pie in the oven for 45 to 60 minutes

greek spinach and feta pie - spanakopita - DONE

Bake until golden brown and all layers are crispy

Cut again

serve the greek spinach pie - spanakopita

and serve - it goes really well with Greek salad!

καλή όρεξη!


  1. Deze gaat ook bij mijn verzamelling recepten! Heerlijk.....

  2. Made this tonight...yammie!! Used frozen spinach and Albert and oma loved it!

  3. Nice blog zeg!
    And the Greek spinach pie looks verry tasty!

  4. Always wanted to try, but never dare. Thanks for encouraging! Looks really good!

    1. Go for it! I hope I can encourage you enough to make it, it is wonderful!

  5. Looks Yummy!!! You should have Tomato Sauce or Indian Tomato Chutney with this.


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