Spanakopita with Wild Greens

Inspired by The Greatest Dishes!

This filling vegetarian pie goes beautifully with avgolemono soup. I used arugula and chard here, but consider dandelion greens, collards greens or broccoli rabe as well. You can use whatever variety of sweet and bitter greens you like as long as you have a good mix.

  • 1-1/2 pounds spinach, tough stalks removed
  • 3/4 pound arugula
  • 3/4 pound rainbow chard
  • 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/3 cup mint leaves, chopped
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced (up to dark green parts)
  • 4 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil, plus more for brushing phyllo
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3/4 cup fennel bulb, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper
  • 6 oz. Greek feta, finely crumbled
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 teaspoon milk
  • 1/2 lb. frozen phyllo dough (1 sleeve in a 1 lb. package), thawed according to package directions
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Thoroughly wash and dry all greens. Remove all the tough stems, then chop them finely. Place in a large bowl. You will have a huge pile of gorgeous greens! Mix the parsley, mint, scallions and dill with the greens. Toss until well combined.
  • In as large and deep a skillet as you can find, heat the oil over medium-low. Add the onion and the fennel and cook until softened, about 7 to 8 minutes. Next you will begin wilting the greens in small batches. It took me 3 batches to get all the greens wilted. Pile the skillet high with the greens mixture then stirring gently, allow the mess to cook down a bit. Add the sugar, then season with salt and pepper. Once the greens are nicely wilted but still recognizable, remove that batch from the heat and place it in a colander in the sink. You will want to allow the greens to drain here for a bit. You can periodically press them gently to squeeze out the excess water and oil. Add the next couple batches of greens to the warm skillet (no need to add more oil, sugar, salt or pepper since you will mix together all the greens at the end) and follow the same process of wilting. Once all the greens have been wilted, allow them to sit in the colander and drain for about 10 minutes, pressing lightly to extract remaining liquid.
  • In a large bowl, combine the warm greens, feta and eggs, stirring gently. Taste the seasonings and add salt and pepper, if necessary.
  • Grease the bottom of a 13″ x 9″ x 2″ glass baking dish with olive oil, making sure to liberally coat the entire surface. Put a few tablespoons of olive oil in a small bowl. You will use a pastry brush to brush the oil onto the dough once you’ve laid it into the dish. Unwrap the sleeve of phyllo dough, which should be defrosted and easy to unroll. Phyllo is very fragile, so you will want to work carefully here. Gently remove the top half of the flaky phyllo dough and place it onto the bottom of the pan, pressing very slightly. Brush the top layer with a bit of olive oil. Spread the greens mixture over the top of the phyllo dough, distributing evenly. Place the remaining phyllo over the top, pressing lightly to help the top layer adhere to the filling. Brush the top layer with a bit of olive oil.
  • In a small bowl, mix the egg yolk with milk. Brush this egg wash over the top of the phyllo, then using a sharp knife, create a few small vents along the top to allow steam to escape.
  • Bake for about 50 minutes, until top is puffy and golden. Allow dish to cool for about 10 minutes before cutting. Best served slightly warm or at room temperature.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. If you use bunches of fresh greens from the market, this recipe is only appropriate for a Sunday when you have a bit more time to cook. Washing and drying three pounds of greens thoroughly is a lengthy task! You can also use the pre-washed, trimmed greens that come bagged. For this recipe, I chose to use the bunches and the result was wonderful but it could have taken much less time if I had used the pre-washed variety.
  • 2. My husband thought the greens mixture was a little bitter for his liking. If you prefer sweeter greens, use those instead. I like the contrast, so I chose the mix. Make it what you like and what you think your family will appreciate.

Preparation time: 45 minute(s)

Cooking time: 1 hour(s)

Number of servings (yield): 8

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