Friday, February 5, 2010
No Fear Fillo!
In the middle of winter, where fresh greens seem like a contradiction in terms, frozen greens really come into play.
Whereas I would be hard-pressed to buy frozen spinach any other time of the year - in winter it makes a lot of sense. Frozen fruits and vegetables, although they do suffer a little loss of nutrition in the freezing and later thawing process, have the advantage to have been harvested when at nutritional peak, namely when in season and therefor cheapest.
One neat way to try frozen greens is in pockets or pot pies.
Spinach pockets in fillo dough is like a to-go version of spinach pie, and while handling fillo dough is a bit intimidating at first one quickly gets the hang of it. Just give it a try. Also there is a really handy HOW TO Video here.
Filling: For a vegan version - omit eggs and all the cheeses and use the marinated tofu and nutritional yeast. The dough I use which is from Athens Foods is vegan.
1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1/2 cup scallions, minced or half an onion 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
¼ cup dried dill
1/2 cup Feta cheese, crumbled - or for a vegan version try scrambled tofu marinated in an olive oil-lemon juice-oregano mix
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons grated cheese or nutritional yeast
Salt and pepper to taste
1 packet fillo dough, thawed
cooking oil and pastry brush
1. Preheat oven to 350º. Lightly oil a cookie sheet.
2. In a blender or food processor quickly puree all your ingredients to a lightly chopped filling. Don’t blend too long - you don’t want a sauce.
3. Open your fillo dough packet and lay flat. remove three sheets of dough and stack. Cut the dough in half lengthwise and work halves separately.
Put a generous tablespoon of filling about 1 inch from lower corner and fold dough over the filling to form a triangle. Keep folding dough over until it is all folded up. Lightly brush with cooking oil. And place on cookie sheet seams down.
Repeat until all filling is used up.
4. Bake at 350º for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm or cold with a nice greek salad.