My pals Amelia and Shyam just moved to Oakland and their new apartment has a great kitchen - a baller kitchen. How could I resist playing in said baller kitchen when I was lucky enough to be their houseguest this past week?
My dinner dish of choice? Spanakopita. Had I made it before? Nope. Did I consult several recipes and then toss them in a jumble to create my own take on the Greek classic? Yup. Was it delicious? Hell to the yup! Is the recipe below? Um, yeah...
1 box frozen phyllo dough (defrosted)
3 10oz. boxes frozen chopped spinach (defrosted)
8 oz. good feta (diced or crumbled)
5 scallions (thinly sliced, whites and greens)
1 shallot (minced)
1 lg. garlic clove (minced)
1 cup fresh dill (chopped)
1 TBSP salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
3/4 cups ghee (melted)
1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease an 8X8 pan with a bit of the ghee. Strain the spinach using cheesecloth or a dishtowel to squeeze out all of the liquid. Saute the scallions, shallot, and garlic in two tablespoons of the melted ghee in a small pan until just starting to brown - about 4 - 5 minutes. Add to the spinach. Mix in the feta, dill, salt, pepper, and nutmeg into the spinach as well. Lightly whisk the eggs and then incorporate in to the spinach mixture. Layer the phyllo at the bottom of the pan (neatness is not necessarily) and brush with melted ghee and sprinkle with breadcrumbs in between each layer. After 6 - 8 layers, place the spinach mixture in the pan and spread evenly before layering on another 6 - 8 sheets of phyllo with ghee and breadcrumbs on top. Finish with a layer of phyllo brushed with ghee. Bake for 1 hour. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before cutting into squares and serving,