the pie trio, part 2: spinach and cheese pie

We’ve made leek and cheese pie already; we’ll make the spinach filling today.

You can use either fresh or frozen spinach.  I had frozen so that’s what I used, but the method is the same either way.

Put the spinach in a nonstick pan with a little spritz of olive oil and let it soften.

Transfer the cooked spinach to a colander to drain.  Sprinkle the salt on the spinach and let it rest for about ten minutes.   The salt will help draw excess water out of the spinach.

Squeeze the spinach outside the colander into the sink, allowing the water to run out of your hands.  The volume of the spinach should reduce by over half.  It’s important to do this to avoid soggy spinach pie.

In a clean bowl, combine the spinach, dill, and cheeses.

Stir to incorporate everything.

Form the phyllo spirals following the instructions on the leek and cheese pie post.

Bake them for about 20 minutes until golden brown and cripsy!

Spanakotyropitakia Strifta | Spiral spinach and cheese pies
makes 8 small pies

4 cups spinach, fresh or frozen, stemmed, washed
1 tsp table salt
1 tbsp dried dill or 1/4 cup fresh dill
1/3 cheese for pies (see below)
1/3 package phyllo dough
olive oil for spraying

1.  Spray a non-stick pan with olive oil lightly.  Add spinach leaves.  Allow to soften.  Drain in colander.   Sprinkle with salt and allow to rest 10 minutes.

2.  Squeeze spinach with hands to remove as much water as possible.

3.  In a bowl, combine spinach with dill and cheese.

4.  Preheat oven to 180 C / 350 F.  Cover a baking sheet with wax paper and spray with oil.  Form phyllo spirals:   cut phyllo in half lengthwise.  Put 1/8 of filling on each sheet along the bottom long edge, and roll up.  Coil the roll around itself to form a spiral.  Place spirals on wax paper and spray with olive oil.

5.  Bake at 180 C / 350 F for 20 minutes or until lightly golden brown in color and crispy.  Allow to rest 15 minutes before serving.

Note:  if not making other kinds of pies at the same time, triple the spinach and dill, double the salt, and use all the phyllo and cheese.

More detailed instructions on how to form phyllo spirals here.

Cheese for pies
makes enough for 24 small pies

140g feta cheese or lefko tyri
160g anthotyro or ricotta cheese
40g shredded parmesan or myzithra cheese
1/4 cup milk (lowfat or skim is fine)

To make cheese sauce, combine all ingredients and mash together.

Nutritional Information:
per serving, i.e., per 1/8 of this recipe including cheese

97 calories
3g fat (2g saturated, 1g unsaturated)
1g carbohydrate
3g protein
0g dietary fiber
9mg cholesterol (3% DV)
114mg sodium (5% DV)
113mg potassium (3% DV)
22% DV of vitamin A

22 thoughts on “the pie trio, part 2: spinach and cheese pie

  1. I have to say that your hubby must certainly look forward to your delicious meals after a day of teaching! They would recharge anyone!

    • I think so! I’m excited to cook a surprise for him for our 2nd anniversary tomorrow… I think he’ll love it! I’ll post about it probably end of next week… IF it works 😉

      Before we met, he’d lived on his own for over a decade and kept himself fed, yet somehow since meeting me he seems to have forgotten to do things like boil water, turn on the oven, etc., and just lets me do it all. I wonder if this ‘amnesia’ is my fault….? (Spoiling husbands is a common newlywed mistake – but it’s so much fun…)

  2. Pingback: Who knew! « Life After Reboot

  3. OMG. Your phyllo work is beautiful. Mine seems to crack. I do get some good phyllo somtimes from Whole Foods. I think it may have something to do with how fresh it is. I love phyllo pies thanks for posting this recipe.

  4. Our family loves spanikopita and is regularly requested for family gatherings. We had a 8 week holiday in a small village on Kythera when our daughters and niece were teenagers. Since then there are many Greek foods that are stables in our diet, spanikopita being one of them. We usually cook a whole pie and cut it into triangles. I was taught by an old Greek lady to include a dessertspoons of dry rice into my spinach cheese mixture to help reduce the risk of the pie being too wet. I was sceptical at the time as i thought you would see and taste the rice, however the small amount is not noticeable in the finished pie.I am going to surprise the family with your spiral pies at the next family get together. Thanks again for your generous sharing of information.

    • It doesn’t surprise me that you like it with a bit of rice – my mother in law often puts leftover spanakoryzo (spinach-risotto) into a pie just like this, sometimes even with ground beef. You can put *anything* into phyllo dough… 🙂

  5. I just read part 1, and now part 2 has me wanting a bite! Lovely presentation. Not as time consuming as preparing it in triangles, which is always an incentive for me to give it a try!

  6. Pingback: the pie trio, part 3: pumpkin and cheese pie | homeingreece

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