Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Easy Casserole style Spanakopita

Charles gave this easy casserole style Spanakopita ten out of ten, and insisted it was company worthy. I loved it too...for some reason spinach by itself feels funny on my teeth, but this is a dream to eat. Popeye would approve!

It is such a satisfying dish that you need no meat (the egg adds protein of course.) It's a wonderful vegetarian entertaining option. This is perfect balanced with a lemony balsamic-dressed salad to refresh your palate. I like to sprinkle the dinner plate with fresh lemon juice & fresh ground pepper, so that every once in a while you hit a taste of it. Lemon wedges let your eaters add more if they like. :0)

To make it:

1 large bunch spinach Well washed--remove much of the stems & cook with a little olive oil and the 'aromatics' (or you can use two frozen packages squeeze to drain.) After cooking the spinach drain it.


  • Spanish Onion (1/2 medium sized one) I save some to add to the filling right before assembly
  • Cilantro (handful fresh chopped) (or dill)
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • Grating nutmeg (equivalent of 2 pinches) I add some during cooking and some before assembling
  • Fresh Lemon zest (2 tsp or so)
  • Pinch or two salt & lots of fresh ground pepper
Mix in with the above:
  • Aprroximately 150 grms (3/4 cup or so) Feta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • bit more fresh nutmeg
  • a bit more of the finely chopped onion
  • more fresh cilantro (or dill)
  • more lemon zest
Preheat oven and Layer in a casserole dish:
  • 1st: Phyllo pastry sheets (I use 3-4 layers on the bottom; it is not important if the sheets break, but melted butter brushed on them is key. I use my hands to put it on. No need for a brush)
  • 2nd:Add bread crumbs between layers
  • 3rd: Spoon in and spread filling
  • 4th: Add more bread crumbs
  • 5th: Add the 3-4 layers more lightly buttered phyllo on top. (Butter top layer well)
  • 6th: Add more bread crumbs
  • 7th: Sprinkle with Nonya seasoning
Bake at 400 degrees for 1/2 an hour (or until golden brown)

Don't have bread crumbs?

Take a bun/bread (I just LOVE sourdough bread) and put it in the microwave for a minute or so--or oven (until it's overheated.) Then just let it harden & grate it. I like that the bread still tastes fresh, not stale, and that you can make it quickly. Don't even have bread? Use well-crushed crackers. Ritz are nice and buttery.

If you cut slits in the top it lets the steam evaporate so it's not too moist:

I found that the slits closed during baking, so I just used a spatula to open them 1/2 way through cooking.

You can fold your phyllo into the traditional shape of spanakopita bundles instead OR roll it, chill it, and cut it to make appetizers. It freezes well and reheats nicely in the oven (though you may want to sprinkle a little butter on top before reheating to keep it from drying out.)

Happy cooking! Happy eating!

P.S. Roasted Feta looks GOOD

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