Inspired by a classic Greek Spanakopita but with a vegan twist, let us introduce you to these crispy, flaky, hand-sized bites of deliciousness. Filled with spinach, garlic, leeks and vegan feta cheese, these make for a great lunch (or snack).
3 tbsp olive oil, separated
2 leeks, sliced
60g pine nuts
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt, separated
1 lemon, zested
20g dill, finely chopped
10g mint, finely chopped
1 tsp dried oregano
100g vegan feta, optional
5 sheets filo pastry
1 tbsp sesame seeds
Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add leeks and pine nuts, and sauté for 5-6 minutes, until the leeks are golden. Add the garlic and ½ tsp salt and sauté for another 2 minutes.
Add the spinach, a couple handfuls at a time, adding more as it wilts. Set aside for 15 minutes. Either using your hands or a sieve, squeeze/press the spinach mixture to remove as much water as possible.
Add the mixture to a bowl, and add another ½ tsp salt, lemon zest, dill, mint, parsley oregano and vegan feta (if using). Mix to combine. Taste for salt and adjust to taste.
Preheat oven to 180˚C. Place the sheets of filo under a damp kitchen towel. Take one sheet and place it on your work surface. Brush it with olive oil and, using a scissor or knife, split it into 3 long equal strips.
Spoon 1 tbsp of filling mixture and place it at the bottom edge of one strip. Fold the bottom diagonally to make a triangle, then continue folding it over down the length of the pastry strip. (It sounds more complicated than it is!). Repeat this process with the remaining 2 strips, then repeat with the remaining 4 filo sheets.
Place the filo triangles onto a large parchment lined baking sheet. Brush the tops with olive oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Bake for 25 minutes, until golden. Let cool for 10 minutes before tucking in.
Note: to reheat the spinach pies a day or two after (if they last that long), don't microwave them! Warm them up for 5 minutes in a 180˚C oven.
By Valentina Concordia
Valentina is our Food Editor, who dreams up our tasty dishes and recipes for our social channels. She has loads of experience cooking up a storm in Italian kitchens, so it’s no surprise she can’t live without good-quality olive oil (don’t come between her and her olive oil) and fresh pasta.