The basic ingredients of this savory Greek pie are spinach, feta cheese and phyllo or filo sheets. For this particular version I found, equal parts of feta cheese and curd or cottage cheese were combined together and mixed until smooth, for a creamier texture and taste. There are two ways to make or serve this vegetarian favorite. One way is to make smaller phyllo sheet triangles with the same spinach & cheese filling. These are easier to handle and eat as a snack or finger food.The other option, which is less time consuming, is to layer some phyllo sheets onto which all the filling is spread and topped with another set of phyllo sheet layers. Each layer was brushed with a combination of olive oil and a little melted butter. The top phyllo layers were then scored and brushed with olive oil before baking, as seen in the photos (below).
Phyllo always bakes to a crisp golden brown color. I guess next time I may have to try brushing the top with some eggwash for a more even golden brown color. The best Greek cuisine experience I had so far was at a restaurant called Greek Islands in the heart of Greektown in Chicago. A cousin suggested it for some authentic Greek dining experience. The saganaki or Greek fried cheese flambe, one of the restaurant’s appetizer specialties, was ignited right by our table by one of the energetic servers as he shouted “opaa”. Walking back to the car, we passed and stopped by Artopolis, a very attractive bakery and cafe where my aunt bought some of their best Greek desserts for us to carry out and sample back home. It was quite a lovely and unforgettable family day in Greektown.