I learned to make spanakopita from a Greek grandmother visiting for the summer. We spent the day making phyllo from scratch which took some practice to get just right. She showed me how to make all sorts of Greek treats, but at the end of the day, it was this amazing pie that really stuck with me. In her version, she would toast the phyllo sheets in the oven before stacking them in the pie to give it a little extra crunch. I think this works best if you have the time. And of course, using store bought phyllo is perfectly fine. Be sure to leave in the package until you are ready to start layering your pie or it will dry out and become brittle.
Usually you see this pie made with spinach but the way I learned was to use any greens available to you in the spring and summer. The greens and scapes in this week's Green Gate Farms CSA share are perfect for this pie! You can throw in a variety of fresh herbs or stick to plain greens. I think adding mint and dill gives the pie a little more character.
You are going to drizzle this with a fair amount of olive oil, so be sure to have a quality oil for this pie. It makes a huge difference!
Spanakopita (Greek Feta and Greens Phyllo Pie)
Serves 2 as a main or 4 as a side
3 scapes, thinly sliced
1 bunch mint
1 bunch dill
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch kale
1 bunch Swiss chard
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound Greek feta
good olive oil
1 package phyllo
salt to taste
Preheat oven to 400.
Clean all herbs and greens thoroughly. Remove ribs from the kale and Swiss chard. Roughly chop herbs and greens and toss in a bowl to combine with minced garlic and the sliced scapes. Drizzle with a tbsp of olive oil and a tsp salt.
Drizzle 1 tbsp oil into the bottom of a 9 x 9 baking dish. Cover with a layer of the greens mixture. Crumble a handful of feta on top of the greens, drizzle with olive oil then place 2 -3 sheets of phyllo. Repeat until your pie is stacked above the rim of the dish, ending with a layer of phyllo. Either brush with olive oil or an egg wash. With cooking, the pie will flatten significantly.
Bake until golden brown, about 40 minutes.