Monday, April 25, 2016

Melissa's Greek Spanakopita Triangles

I first heard of this dish when I saw the first "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" movie.   Spanakopita is a Greek delight, which literally translates to "spinach pie".   It is phyllo pastry brushed with butter and filled with a spinach and feta cheese mixture.   Dill is the essential ingredient for this dish, so be sure not to leave that out.   This dish is simple in flavor, but delicious!

Melissa's Greek Spanakopita Triangles
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced green onion (or regular onion)
¼ cup fresh dill, finely chopped
1 tsp. minced garlic
8 oz. bag fresh washed spinach (or equal amount of frozen spinach)
12oz. container crumbled feta cheese
2 eggs
¼ cup sour cream (optional)
1 stick melted butter
¼ cup olive oil
1lb package of phyllo dough, fully thawed

Tool you will need:   Pastry brush
1.        In a large pan, heat the olive oil to medium heat.  Add the onions, dill and garlic.  Sautee until the onions become clear, stirring frequently. 
2.       Add spinach to the pan (if using an equal amount of frozen spinach, make sure it is thawed and all the liquid has been squeezed out).  Allow the fresh spinach to cook down in the pan, turning it over every 30 seconds or so, until all the leaves have wilted.  This should take about 3 minutes.  Remove from heat. 
3.       In a mixing bowl, combine the feta cheese, sour cream and eggs.  Blend very well.   Add to the spinach pan, and mix until well incorporated.  This will be your filing. 
4.       In a smaller bowl mix together the melted butter and olive oil.  Set aside. 
5.       Preheat oven to 350 degrees.    Unroll the phyllo sheets.  Peel up one Phyllo sheet, fold it in half lengthwise and lay it down.  It should now look like a long strip, about 3 or 4 inches wide.  Brush with butter/olive oil mixture, until the whole surface is lightly dampened.   Do the same with a second sheet of phyllo, laying over the top of the first one.  
6.       Using a kitchen spoon, take a walnut-sized portion of the spinach filing and place filling on one of the buttery phyllo strip.   Begin folding the spinach filing into the philo strip, in a triangular fold like a flag.  Keep folding until the filling is no longer visible and the entire strip of phyllo is now a puffy triangle. 
7.       Brush a baking sheet with some of the butter/olive oil mixture and place the folded phyllo triangle on the baking sheet.   Repeat with more phyllo sheets until all your spinach filling is used up. 
8.       Bake spanakopita triangles in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden.  Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes.  Serve.  

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