Spanakopita is a very traditional Greek dish with a wild twist with our Wild Spanakopita.
For mine, I’ve used nettle, dandelion, bistort, and common sorrel, but really anything green and good can be used. You could even make a coastal version with wild seaweeds, sea purslane, sea spinach and more….
I’ve also made my own vegan feta for this one, but shop-bought would be fine too.
What is Spanakopita?
Spanakopita is a Greek spinach and cheese pie that has been enjoyed since ancient times. It is typically made with layers of crispy phyllo dough and filled with a mixture of spinach and feta cheese, along with fresh herbs and aromatics. Spanakopita can be served as an appetizer or as a main course, and it is often found in coffee shops, bakeries, and restaurants in Greece. It is important to properly handle and thaw the phyllo dough, and each layer should be brushed with olive oil to achieve the desired texture. Spanakopita can also be made in advance and refrigerated before baking.
Ingredients for our Wild Spanakopita Pie
- 200g fresh greens
- 1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes
- 100g feta or vegan alternative
- 1 packet of pre-made filo pastry.
Ingredients for Vegan Feta
- 80g blanched unsalted almonds
- 190ml cold water
- 1 1/2 tbsp Agar
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp citric acid
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
Method to make the Feta.
In a small bowl pour boiling water over the almonds, cover and leave for a minimum of 8 hrs.
Drain the almonds, place them in a blender and add all of the other ingredients.
Process at the highest setting until you have a smooth, creamy consistency.
Pour the mixture into a saucepan and slowly heat, stirring continuously until it reaches 60’C. At this point the agar will be activated and should start to thicken the mixture.
When thick, pour into a small tray and allow to cool, once cool, refrigerate and leave for a couple of hours to firm up.
The feta will be ready after around 2 hours and will keep for up to 2 days in an airtight container.
Method for the Wild Spanakopita Pie:
- Roughly chop the greens and add to a large saucepan with a couple of spoons of water. Cook gently until soft and wilted, then drain, squeezing out any excess water. Allow to cool and then roughly chop again and add the chopped tomatoes and feta.
- Carefully unfold the filo pastry and keep covered with a damp tea towel until needed.
- Take one sheet of filo brush liberally with the oil from the tomatoes and place oil side down in a flan case or cake tin, allowing some of the pastry to hang over the sides.
- Brush another sheet of filo with oil and place in the dish again allowing it to hang over the sides, repeat until you have a base around 5 sheets thick.
- Spoon over the filling and pull the filo over to create a pie, some extra sheets can be scrunched up and added to the centre.
- Brush well with oil, sprinkle over some sesame or nigella seeds if you have any and bake at 180’C for around 30 minutes.
- Allow to cool slightly then remove from tin and slice into wedges, serve warm with a salad or enjoy cold with a glass of Retsina.