Spinach Pies from Crete

3:10 pm on 20 September 2013

(Makes 20)

It’s important to use a creamy feta for this recipe because very firm feta can tear the pastry when it is rolled into coils.

Ingredients

  • 240g baby spinach leaves, trimmed
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • bunch slim spring onions, trimmed and sliced
  • 200g creamy feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1 large (size 7) free-range egg, beaten
  • 1 Tbsp chopped mint
  • 2 Tbsp chopped dill
  • 2 Tbsp pine nuts
  • 200g filo pastry
  • 50–70ml olive oil
  • Yoghurt for serving

Method

1. Wash spinach and dry as best you can in a clean tea towel or with paper towels. Put spinach in a colander and rub 1½ teaspoons of salt through. Leave to soften for 30 – 45 minutes, tossing once or twice. Wring out excess moisture, chop finely and transfer to a bowl.

2. Preheat oven to 190°C (fanbake). Line a shallow baking dish with baking paper. Add spring onions, feta, egg, herbs, pine nuts and black pepper to taste to spinach.

3. Cut filo sheets in half vertically, then stack and cover with a clean cloth. Working with one piece of filo at a time, and keeping remainder covered with the cloth, brush filo with oil and fold in half lengthways. Put a small line of filling along length of filo, then roll up and gently shape into a coil. Transfer to prepared baking dish, keeping coils pressed closely together to stop them unravelling during baking. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

4. Brush tops of filo coils with a little oil. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve hot or warm with yoghurt.

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm

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