Spanakopita (Greek Spinach and Feta Cheese Filled Phyllo Triangles Recipe
- You Also Need “Tools”:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 lbs of fresh spinach (or 2 10 oz. packages frozen spinach, thawed and drained)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves (or 1 tsp dried parsley)
- 1/2 pound feta cheese, crumbled
- pinch of nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup (2 sticks) melted butter
- 1 package of frozen phyllo pastry
- pastry brush
- sharp knife for cutting phyllo dough
- 2 damp towels to keep phyllo from drying out
- baking sheet
- wire cooling rack
Preparation time 30mins
Cooking time 50mins
Preheat oven to 350°F. Move rack to center of oven. Grease baking sheet lightly with butter.
Make Spanakopita Filling:
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in large frying pan over moderate heat. Add spinach, cook until wilted. Remove from heat, let cool and drain in a colander, then squeeze spinach until all excess water comes out. Chop spinach. (Obviously, if you are using frozen chopped spinach, you can skip this step.)
In a large mixing bowl, combine chopped spinach, parsley, feta cheese, and nutmeg. Taste for seasoning, and add salt and pepper accordingly. Mix in egg. Set filling aside.
Fold Spanakopita Phyllo Triangles:
Keep melted butter in small bowl with pastry brush nearby.
Lay flattened layer of phyllo pastry sheets on counter top and cover loosely with a damp (not wet, and certainly not “moist”) towel.
Place 1 phyllo pastry sheet on cutting board. Brush with melted butter. Top with another phyllo sheet, brush with more butter, and add a third sheet pf phyllo pastry on top. Slice the buttered phyllo stack lengthwise into strips that are about 3″ wide. Depending on the dimensions of your phyllo sheets, you will get 3 or 4 strips.
Spoon about 1 tablespoon of spinach and feta cheese filling at one end of a phyllo strip. Fold one corner of phyllo over the filling to the other edge to make a triangle. Fold the filling end over end up the strip like a flag. Put the finished phyllo tringle seam side down on the baking sheet and cover with another damp towel.
Continue this monotonous (but exciting!) process until all the filling is gone.
Right before baking, brush more melted butter on top of each phyllo triangle.
Bake triangles in middle of oven until golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool, but don’t wait too long to serve. They taste best when hot.
You can also make the spanakopita, and freeze them. Bake them straight from the freezer; just make sure to add about 10 minutes to the baking time.