Hortopitakia: Savory turnovers with spinach and herbs
I hope everyone is enjoying their Wednesday. I came across another Greek recipe that my family has been making for a very long time. It is a bit similar to spanakopita, but this one doesn’t have any cheese. I love the flavors of the spinach and the herbs. Enjoy and I apologize for not posting a picture of this, due to our air conditioning being broken and I cannot turn the oven on. (That is being fixed as I type this.)
Prep Time- 45 minutes
Cook Time- 8 minutes
1 pound of spinach washed and chopped
1 pound of fresh fennel, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/3 cup of olive oil- save a bit more for frying
1/2 cup of water
1 bunch of dill- chopped
2 tsp of cumin
Sea salt and ground pepper to taste
You can use phyllo or puff pastry. (1 pound of phyllo or 2 pounds of puff pastry.)
Flour for the working surface
To make the filling, sauté the fennel and the onion in the oil until the onion is translucent. Add the water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook for about 20 minutes and then add spinach, salt and pepper. Cook uncovered over medium heat until the spinach is soft, about 5 minutes. Now drain very well, remove all excess liquids. Add in the dill, cumin and garlic.
If using homemade phyllo dough, take a piece and roll it out to the thickness of 4 sheets. If using puff pastry or phyllo, store bought, roll it out to the same thickness.
Directions for homemade phyllo-To form the pies, work on a lightly floured surface with dry hands. Using a circular guide, cut out a circle of dough. Next place a spoonful of the spinach mixture on one side of the circle. Fold the other half of the circle over to form a half circle shape. Using a fork, pinch the edges all the way to seal the dough. (You can always wet fingers a bit to help seal.)
Directions for commercial phyllo:
Defrost in the refrigerator overnight and make sure to bring to room temperature before opening the package. Cut the phyllo sheets lengthwise into 3 inch strips. You can cut several sheets. Place a small square at one end of the phyllo strip and place a teaspoon of filling on the square. Fold into a triangle. Continue to re peat the process until the dough and filling are all used up.
In a medium to large frying pan, heat 1.3 inch of oil over medium heat. Fry to a light golden on both sides. Remove all the excess oil, and place on a plate or baking rack layered with paper towels.
* You can serve it with fresh Tzatziki.