LEMON SPINACH AND FETA;
- Cooking Time: 1 hr
- Servings: 30-50
- Preparation Time: 1.5 hrs
- 1 package Frozen Phyllo Dough ~fully thawed~
- (you will need to leave that out early am or the night before to thaw.)
- 2 packages frozen chopped spinach ~also thawed~ and drained
- 1 good sized onion white or red (not yellow) finely chopped
- (or pulsed in food processor till chopped scraping sides after each "pulsing")
- 1/5 -1 full bulb of finely chopped garlic
- 300-500 g Feta cheese chopped up in 1 cm chunks
- (I get the best results with sheep feta but cow is good, I have also had great results using vegan "feta"
- 1 beaten egg (optional)
- 1 lemon juiced
- lots of olive oil on hand you want one with some flavor but not an overpowering virgin -if that's the kind you have and you are worried you can mix a bit of melted or clarifyed butter while you are working (it's hard to keep it liquid otherwise I would use butter all the time)
If you have a good food processor (kitchenAid) this will save you time too...
In food Processor:
Pulse garlic, add Onions pulse 3 times (always scrape sides after each 10 sec pulsing) check mixture you whould have small bits of onion and smaller bits of garlic keep going untill it looks good to you.
Chop up the cheese and toss that in the Food processor with about 2 tbsp olive oil, juice half the lemon into there, salt and pepper too and pulse a bit to mix it up with onions and garlic
Now taste that mix add what ever spices you want to and more salt and pepper to taste.
Put strained spinach in a big bowl and "fluff it up"
In a little side bowl beat the egg with the other half lemon juice
Add onion/garlic/cheese mix to spinach and then pour egg mix over top and stirr it all up untill the whole bowl is full of little while cheese and onion/garlic bits
Taste again make sure you didn't miss anything major...
Now starts the real work.
get your station ready with
-a small dish of olive oil (on right side on cutting board)
-a pastry brush (in dish of oil)
-reasonably long and sharp knife (i use my husbands biggest chef knife it is almost the length of the phyllo dough) (tucked in beside small bowl)
-Phyllo dough in package folded up across top of cutting board(read package instructions on making triangle -it's the easiest way- they will also tell you to wrap phyllo in a damp clean towel but it's better to just work as fast as you can and keep in wrapped in waxed paper -often part of packaging- while you work
-place your filling on your left top corner with a large spoon in it (the amount you want to fill each triangle with)
-on your far right you will need a cookie sheet with either parchment or cooking spray both have advantages
Now that you are ready make sure you have a cup of wine and you are comfy!
Take 2-3 layers of phyllo and refold/roll the remaining
Completely cover the top of the sheets you pulled with a thin coating of olive oil
Cut the sheets (all 2 or 3 at once, from top to bottom) in several straight even stripes. Keeping in mind that the width of these will make the shorter sides of each triangle
Now spoon an equal amount into the bottom center on each strip and fold from the bottom right corner across, so the bottom is lying over the filling and is lined up with the left side of that strip. Now repeat that type of folding over and matching up back and forth to the end of the strip and
Use some more oilive oil to "seal" the ends of each strip and place on the cookie sheet.
Repeat these steps until you have run out of strips of phyllo or filling.
And bake about an hour (turning over part way through)
at 350`until golden browned (or a bit less if saving for other times)
So I thought others might want to make them too.
Give yourself a lot of time. To save some prep time this is the one thing I make out of some frozen ingredients.
Have fun with the spices ... I'm going vague about that purposely! Don't be afraid to taste the cold mixture and adjust the spices; Try different spices too toss a little lemon pepper, Greek seasoning or a bit on Morrocan spices in the mix... after you have tried them simple with salt and pepper you'l want to try them in different styles... They only keep getting better!
You can freeze them (store them about a month in freezer) and reheat when needed ... Fresh is still better. If you are making lots and freezing some it's best to slightly undercook those you wish to freeze so that they can be re-heated without becoming too dry.
I like to make both a Tsaziki (cucumber yogourt sauce) and a plum sauce "gastrique" with them.