Heat 1/4 Cup Olive Oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onions and leek until translucent, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the spinach and sauté until the leaves have wilted and the liquid has cooked off, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool somewhat. When cool enough to handle, finely chop the spinach and place in a large bowl.
Preheat the over to 375 degrees. Lightly oil (always use olive oil) a 12-inch diameter or 9×13-inch metal baking pan.
Add dill and feta to spinach mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste (careful with the salt as the feta will add quite a bit of its own.) Pour the eggs over and give a stir to combine well.
Open up the phyllo pastry and place on work surface. Moisten a paper towel and cover dough to prevent it from drying out as you work. Layer the phyllo in the pan, brushing each phyllo layer generously with olive oil. Use half of the phyllo sheets to make the bottom pastry layer.
Put the spinach mixture in and press the top down gently to smooth filling. Add top layer of phyllo pastry, oiling between sheets as for bottom layer.
Using a sharp knife, score the upper layers of pastry into the size pieces you will want to serve once the pie is baked. Be careful not to cut through the bottom layer of pastry.
Bake the pie in the middle of the oven for 40 to 45 minutes until it is golden brown. Cool until just warm. Cut into serving sized pieces and serve either just warm or at room temperature.
“I have been so disappointed with the pita bread bough in stores. It is usually so dry. So when I sat down to make a Mediterranean themed lunch menu, complete with hummus and tzatziki, I knew I must find an alternative. This bread has a nice soft, spongy texture. It could be made without the spring onions or garlic for something more plain. Or experiment with other variations of spices or whatever you can dream up.” – April Ferre
Place the flour, salt, yeast, spring onions, and garlic in a large mixing bowl. Stir well to mix. Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and add water. Mix to form a soft, but not sticky dough.
Turn the dough on to a floured surface and knead until smooth. Do not over knead. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Put the dough into the bowl and flip once to coat dough with oil. Cover with plastic wrap or a wet towel and put in a warm place to let rise until doubled in size.
Punch down the dough. Divide into 12 pieces and roll each out into a thin, flat circle. Heat a large frying pan until hot. Dust off any excess flour from the dough round and cook for 1 minute, or until lightly browned in parts, then flip over and cook for 30 seconds. Brush top of bread lightly with olive oil. Best if eaten same day.
2013 Recipe – April Ferre – From The Complete Book of Greek Cooking by Rena Salaman & Jan Cutler, 2005
“I fell in love with Tzatziki at a Greek restaurant in Davis called Symposium, who also make a fantastic chicken, artichoke and feta pizza. I’ve tried a couple of recipes since then, but this is the closest I’ve come to reliving that experience. Some versions of tzatziki use fresh dill instead of mint, but I prefer the mint version. Eat it with some pita or as a dip for vegetables. This sauce also goes great on chicken kebabs in pita, falafel, or as a spread for sandwiches or even burgers. ” – April Ferre
Peel and finely grate cucumber (best done in a bowl to collect juice.) Squeeze all of the liquid out (see note below.)
Combine all ingredients and mix well. Chill for several hours before serving. Serve with naan, pita, or other flat bread.
Don’t throw out the cucumber juice! Instead, make a glass of Cucumber Lime/Lemon-Ade! I got this idea from something similar served at the Whole Earth Festival in Davis. Combine 1 part cucumber juice with 2 parts water (still, or sparking if you are in a festive mood) and add lime or lemon juice and sugar to taste. It is quick, tasty, and a good way to get some extra nutrients and hydration.
“In graduate school, I came to really love Mediterranean food. My first standout experience with hummus was on a pita with lettuce, tomato, onion, and lettuce at the Whole Earth Festival in Davis. The Whole Earth Festival is primarily a craft fair, with music, and a focus on sustainability education. They are also an all vegetarian event. Those who know me know that I am most certainly a carnivore. Generally, vegetarian meals, while sometimes tasty, just don’t do it for me as a meal. But this hummus on pita was actually very satisfying. What I’ve found since then is that hummus is extremely variable when bought in the store. Some is bland; some way too spicy for my taste buds. My favorite place for hummus is Ikeda’s Produce Market, and this comes close to approximating it. Serve it with pita alone, or make it a sandwich like at the Whole Earth Festival. It is also good as a dip for vegetables or crackers or as a spread on sandwiches.” – April Ferre
“I found this while looking for hummus recipes. They are surprisingly addictive and reheat in the microwave well.” – April Ferre
“Known as Börek, these crisp, cheese-filled pastries are a common feature of street food throughout much of the Mediterranean, where they are often taken with aperitifs. They are easy to make at home, but require a little time and patience.” – The Complete Book of Greek Cooking
40(Approximately 1 Pound) Filo Pastry Sheets (9×14 Inches)
Preheat Oven to 375 degrees.
Mix the feta, nutmeg, and herbs in a bowl. Add pepper to taste and mix.
Cut filo sheets in half lengthwise to make 14 x 4 1/2-inch sheets. Brush one sheet of filo lightly with olive oil. Place another sheet on top of it and brush that too. Place 1 rounded teaspoonful of the cheese filling at the base of the filo, fold the corners in diagonally to enclose it, then roll the pastry up into a cigar shape. Brush the end with a little extra olive oil to seal, then place join-side down on a non-stick baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining pastry and filling.
Brush the pastries with more olive oil and bake for 20 minutes or until crisp and golden. Cool on a wire rack.
Tip: When using filo pastry, it is important to keep the unused sheets covered so that they don’t dry out. The quantities for filo pastry in this recipe are approximate, as the size of filo sheets varies. Any unused pastry will keep in the refrigerator for a week or so, if it is well wrapped.
2013 Adapted Recipe – April Ferre – The Complete Book of Greek Cooking by Rena Salaman & Jan Cutler, 2005.