Deep-Dish Spanakopita

This Greek-flavored casserole starts out on the lowest oven rack to crisp the bottom pastry layer and finishes on the middle rack to ensure a flaky top.

Yield: 8 servings
Recipe from Oxmoor House

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 green onions, chopped (1 cup)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 (6-ounce) packages fresh baby spinach or 11 cups chopped Swiss chard
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 (8-ounce) package feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried tomatoes in oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 (16-ounce) package frozen phyllo pastry, thawed (we tested with Athens)
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, cubed and softened

Preparation

  1. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until hot. Add green onions and garlic; sauté 3 minutes or until tender. Add spinach and water; cover and cook 8 minutes or until spinach wilts. Cool spinach completely in a colander set over a bowl. Return cooled spinach to pan. Add cheeses, tomatoes, oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper, stirring well to combine.
  2. Trim phyllo sheets to 13" x 9", if necessary. Layer 8 sheets of phyllo in a lightly greased 13" x 9" baking dish, using half of melted butter to brush between sheets. (Keep remaining phyllo covered with a damp cloth.) Bake at 400° on lowest oven rack for 6 minutes or until lightly browned; set aside.
  3. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in flour; cook 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Cook over medium heat 2 minutes, whisking constantly. Whisk in cream cheese and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  4. Spread spinach filling over baked phyllo crust; drizzle with white sauce.
  5. Layer remaining phyllo sheets over filling using remaining half of melted butter to brush between sheets. Using a sharp knife, score top layer of phyllo into 8 portions. Bake at 400° on middle oven rack 30 minutes or until pastry is golden. Serve hot.
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