Spanakopita parcels

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The food in Greece is so good its almost a dangerous place to visit, inevitably I end up needing a diet and whole new exercise regime when I come back. This isn’t to say the food is unhealthy, it’s just there’s such a quantity of delicious things to eat at all times of day, it’s almost impossible to employ any kind of self control.

In Greece, although traditional mains like moussaka and kleftiko are undoubtedly amazing, I often find the dips and starters the best part (accompanied by an obligatory Greek salad). These spinach and feta parcels (or spanakopita as they are called in Greek) are one of the most wonderful starters. They are light and easy to make but surprisingly filling. Here’s my recipe.

Ingredients:
1 pack filo pastry (12 sheets)
2 eggs (lightly beaten)
500g spinach
400g feta
1 tbsp parsley
1 tbsp mint
1/2 large onion
4 tbsp olive oil
50g butter

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees c.

2.In a large pan, heat the olive oil. Finely chop the onion and fry until soft but not brown.
3. Tear and add the spinach (removing stalks). Cook the spinach down until soft.
4. Put the spinach aside and allow to cool in a mixing bowl. Once cooler, strain excess water and season with salt and cracked pepper.
5. Finely chop the feta, the mint and the parsley and add with the beaten eggs to the spinach and mix.
6. Prepare the filo by cutting the sheets into 15x15cm sheets.
6. Melt the butter in a small pan and brush each sheet of filo with a small amount.
7. Layer up 4 sheets of buttered filo in a star shape. Then add a good tablespoon of the spinach and feta mixture to the centre.
8. Gather up all the edges of the parcel and twist together gently until the parcel is closed. Place each parcel on a baking paper lined oven tray.
9. Brush all your finished parcels with a tiny bit more butter and bake at 200 degrees for 20 mins, until golden brown.
Serve with chopped salad.

A delicious little taste of Greece!

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