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Free-Form Spinach Pie

Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto

This spinach pie is one of my all-time favorite comfort food meals — one I have been making for years. It’s easy to throw together on a weeknight and leftovers taste great reheated the next day. Best part is… it is absolutely delicious. Okay, anything wrapped in puff pastry is delicious. Okay, puff pastry is certainly not a health food, but extra spinach makes up for it, right?

This is one of those recipes that you never really need a recipe for. Once you have made it, you can make it over and over again without ever having to think about it. It’s just that simple.

Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto

Like a Greek spinach pie but different

This is kind of like a Greek spanakopita — a spanakopita with extra spinach, two types of cheese, two types of herbs, a little lemon zest for some sunshiny flavors and a pinch of grated chili pepper flakes for a little more depth of flavor. Oh, and puff pastry instead of flaky phyllo pastry dough. Okay, it could be spanakopita’s wilder cousin. Wilder cousin who doesn’t conform to the rules. Yes, it’s that flexible. You could make this gallete style (meaning a rather rustic, free-form tart that only has its edges folded in just enough to to keep everything in place), or your could prepare this spinach pie in a tart form or pie dish and fold in the corners, or you could do as I do and cook it on a pizza pan or baking sheet fully encased in puff pastry. Plus you could even go further and use phyllo (filo) pastry for extra thin and light layers.

Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto
Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto

Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto
Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto

Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto
Free-Form Spinach Pie with Feta and Ricotto

A spinach pie that’s easy to prepare, using simple ingredients

I almost always have frozen spinach on hand (and newly frozen kale, cause I finally found a supermarket that carries it, thanks to the smoothie and kale trend!) And since spinach is always on hand and the other ingredients are easily always available at my local supermarket, this dish makes for the perfect, quick, pick-up some stuff up after work and prepare type of meal. That is if I remember to call my favorite Schwabe and ask him to take the spinach out of the freezer to thaw on time! :)

Free-Form Spinach Pie
 
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A rustic free-form spinach pie loaded with spinach, ricotta, Greek feta, parsley, dill, a little lemon zest and a pinch of grated chili pepper flakes. A simple and delicious vegetarian dish.
Author:
Recipe type: Vegetarian, Side Dish
Serves: 4-6

INGREDIENTS:
1 package frozen spinach (500 g), thawed and drained of excess liquid (less spinach is also okay)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 small yellow onions, chopped (150 g)
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind (from an organic lemon)
generous handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
generous handful dill leaves, chopped
red pepper chili flakes, to taste (I like to use freshly grated chili flakes)
300 g ricotta
150 g Greek feta cheese
1 x package rolled puff pastry (275 g) (a 25 x 38 cm package)

METHOD:
1. Preheat oven to 430°F / 220°C and line a baking sheet or pizza tray with parchment paper.

2. Drain the thawed spinach, and gently squeeze out the excess moisture.

3. Heat the oil in small skillet or saucepan, add onion and garlic, and sauté until the onion is soft, about 4-5 minutes.

4. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, sauteed onion, lemon rind, parsley, dill, chili flakes, ricotta and feta cheese.

5. Layout the puff pastry on the prepared baking sheet. Place the spinach mixture in middle of puff pastry, spread out a little and fold the pastry roughly over the filling (see notes).

6. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

NOTES:
Once the spinach is thawed gently squeeze it together to remove the excess liquid. It doesn’t have to be completely removed, just not soaking wet.

Since the puff pastry comes in a rectangular shape, I cut off a few centimeters off the end to make it a little more square, then place the extra strip of puff pastry along the middle of the spinach pie.

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