This recipe is similar to both Greek spanakopita and Arabic fatayer bi sabanekh. In this recipe I used frozen cut spinach because it saved me the time of having to wash and wilt fresh spinach. My husband eats this dish with a side of plain yogurt, and while it might sound strange, I have to admit the tang of the yogurt accentuates the spinach very well…who knew! This recipe will be sent over to Zoe for this week’s feta Blogger Secret Ingredient!
Spinach, Sweet Onion, and Feta Pie
(Yield: 1 (9-inch) pie, cut into 8 wedges, 2 per serving if served as a main course)
2 TB olive oil
2 medium sweet Vidalia onions, diced (~3 c)
3-6 cloves garlic, crushed or minced (you can use more or less depending on taste)
1 ¼ lb wilted spinach (once the water is removed this will be ~3 c)
½ tsp pepper
¼ tsp salt
3 large eggs (or 2 eggs and 2 egg whites)
¼ lb (4 oz) feta, crumbled
10 (14”X9”) sheets phyllo dough, thawed in the refrigerator overnight
Lemon wedges, for garnish (optional)
9” pie plate
Preheat the oven to 375F. Place the wilted spinach in a colander fitted over a bowl; use a spatula to gently squeeze the water out of the spinach. (Note: Don’t discard the spinach water, you can do other things with it…maybe add it to a fruit/veggie smoothie or to soup?)
Heat the olive oil in a large pan; add the onions and sauté until over medium-low heat until they just start to caramelize (~20 minutes); make sure to stir occasionally and add water as needed if the pan gets too dry. Add the garlic and sauté ~1 minute and add the spinach and cook ~3 minutes or until you don’t see moisture in the bottom of the pan. Add the pepper to the spinach mixture and allow this mixture to cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and mix in the feta; slowly add the spinach mixture.
Coat a 9” pie plate with cooking spray. Lightly spray one sheet of phyllo with cooking spray and place it in the pie plate so that the dough overlaps the edges of the plate rim. Repeat this process with six sheets of dough, placing each so that it overlaps the edge. (To prevent the phyllo from drying out, gently cover the dough with a damp towel when you’re not using it.) Spread the spinach mixture in the pie plate. Lightly spray three sheets of phyllo with cooking spray and arrange the sheets on the top of the spinach mixture so that they slightly overlap the plate. Roll the overlapping phyllo into a decorative edge and cut four 2” slits on the top of the pie. Cover the pie with aluminum foil and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the aluminum foil and bake for ~25 minutes, or until the crust is golden and crispy.
Serve with lemon wedges to juice on top, if desired.