Sunday, 16 November 2014

Dave's spinach pie recipe

It occurred to me that it's been absolutely ages since I posted a great
Dave's spinach pie 
recipe and this spinach pie that Dave makes is one of our favourites. The original idea is the Greek Spanakopita, but this version has been Anglicised and now Espanoled too! Back home, Dave might add a rasher of bacon, but here he sliced a tomato into the spinach mix. We had to decipher the packets to find the right pastry - puff pastry in Spanish is Masa de Hojaldre and we can get it frozen in packs of two sheets. Cheddar cheese was available at the Mercadona in Almenara so that's what Dave used, but I think the pie would be tasty with one of the Spanish hard cheeses instead. The ingredients list below makes a generous pie for two that could easily be stretched to four portions with the addition of a side dish such as a crisp green salad.

Big bag (300g) of spinach leaves
1/2 a medium onion
2-3 cloves of garlic
Large pinch of mixed herbs
Salt and pepper
Sliced tomato (optional)
Rasher of bacon (optional)
Puff pastry
Grated cheese
1 beaten egg

Put the spinach into boiling water for a minute or two until it has wilted. Repeatedly drain and squeeze the spinach to remove as much water as possible. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 220c.

Finely chop onion and garlic and cook together over a medium heat until soft but not browned.

Mix onion with spinach, herbs and seasoning. At this point you can also add a sliced tomato or a chopped, cooked bacon rasher.

Lay out a sheet (27 x 24cm) of puff pastry on a flat baking tray. A tray with a lip is best in case liquid from the pie filling leaks during baking. Fold the pastry in two and then unfold it again to leave a visible half-way line. Put all the mixture on one side of the line and spread it evenly, but leaving about 1/2 inch of pastry clear at the edges.

Sprinkle as much or as little grated cheese as you like over the spinach mixture. We like lots of cheese, but this does make the pie more greasy when it is cooked.

Fold the pastry over and crimp securely all around the edges to seal in the filling. Brush the top of the pastry with as much of the egg as is needed. Make two or three cuts in the top to allow steam to escape during baking.

Bake at about 220c for 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden and you can hear the filling bubbling when you open the oven door.

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