Monday, 21 July 2014

spanakopita: a taste of kefalonia.


spanakopita (span-oh-kop-it-ah) is a greek pastry which is traditionally made from spinach, feta, dill, garlic and onion layered up between filo pastry sheets. the earthy flavour of the spinach married with the creamy, tangy cheese, aromatic dill and flaky pastry work perfectly for this light, summery dish. 

in particular, this recipe is inspired by kefalonia, a beautiful island to the west of greece which boasts sandy beaches and natural caves. i could image myself enjoying this al fresco with a cold glass of crisp sauvignon blanc, at a villa overlooking the ionian sea. 

shopping list.
(serves two)
♥ two garlic cloves (6p)
♥ half a white onion (10p)
♥ two spring onions (14p)
♥ a handful of dill (18p)
♥ 250g baby spinach leaves (£1)
♥ 200g feta cheese (£1)
♥ 75g ricotta cheese (28p)
♥ two eggs (40p)
♥ three sheets of filo pastry (36p)
♥ 10g butter (4p)
♥ 10g sesame seeds (8p)
♥ olive oil
♥ salt and pepper to taste

total cost £3.64
per serving £1.82


preheat the oven to 200 degrees c.

step one. chop up the garlic, onion, spring onion and dill and cook together in a saucepan with a little olive oil for five minutes. 


step two. add in the spinach 50g at a time. roughly remove any large spinach stalks as you go.


step three. when all the spinach has wilted, turn off the heat and set aside. you may want to use a colander if there is lots of oil. the combination of flavours in my kitchen was already starting to make me hungry.


step four. crumble the feta in a bowl.


step five. mix together the spinach and dill with the feta, ricotta and eggs. season with salt and pepper.


step six. use kitchen scissors to cut the filo into rectangles, roughly the same size as your oven proof dish. for this recipe i used a small ceramic dish which measures 8 x 5 inches. with three sheets of filo i made around six rectangles, with a few offcuts.


step seven. melt the butter and brush onto the first filo sheet. layer up the spinach and cheese mix on top. repeat filo, butter, filling, filo, butter, filling, filo, bu... okay you get the idea.


step eight. scatter over the sesame seeds and scrunch up the filo offcuts to make a pattern/extra crunchy topping.


step nine. bake for 30 minutes.



step ten. slice up and enjoy!


i enjoyed mine as a main meal, but you could also slice up smaller and have as part of a greek meze platter or with a salad. you could also make these as little filo triangle bites for go-to summer snacking. 

this recipe is often made with the addition of kefalotyri or kefalotiri, a hard and salty cheese made from sheep or goat's milk. it is hard to find in the uk but i'm sure would be in all the good cheese shops in greece, the greek islands or cyprus.

what are your favourite greek recipes? have you ever been inspired by a recipe on holiday and then come home and tried it it out for yourself?

this recipe is an entry to the villa plus #vpeats cooking competition, inspired by the greek island of kefalonia.

note: this recipe was developed by me for the villa plus competition. i was reimbursed for the ingredients featured.

7 comments:

  1. Agreed, this looks so so so delicious! x

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  2. Thanks both - glad you enjoyed the post! :)

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  3. Looks ridiculously yummy. It's gone into my 'urgent' bookmark folder :)

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  4. Oh wow this looks amazing! Bookmarked! x x x

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Sarah - so pleased you enjoyed the recipe Xx

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