If you’re from New England, Greek pizza means thick-crust, pan pizza usually made in mom-n-pop pizza places owned by Greek immigrants – Broadway Pizza here in Lowell is a great local example. It’s yummy, and I really missed it when I lived in CA. This pizza isn’t New England pizza place Greek pizza, but it’s still really good.
Now, I have a confession to make about this recipe… I really like eating the final product, but I don’t like cooking it at all. It’s funny, I hadn’t had this dish in years and I realized why that was once I started cooking. That confession isn’t meant to scare you off, because this is some serious yumminess, it’s more of an example of my own personal cooking pet peeves – cleaning spinach and working with fillo dough.
There is absolutely no reason for either of those things to bother me, they just do. There’s something about pulling all of those stems out of the spinach and layering all of those sheets of dough that just seems tedious. It’s not them, it’s me.
Anyway, this recipe begins with cleaning a lot of spinach – a pound to be exact. If you were feeling especially flush, you could substitute baby spinach, which doesn’t need to be cleaned, but you’ll pay for that convenience. The spinach is sautéed with onions, garlic, dried herbs, and some lemon juice.
Then you prepare the fillo…
…and top it with cheese.
Then comes the spinach mixture…
…fresh tomatoes (and, if you like them, which I don’t, Greek olives)…
…and evem more cheese (cheese is important).
It comes out of the oven all golden and crisp.
Okay, maybe it’s worth it 😉
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup minced onion
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 lb spinach leaves, washed, de-stemmed, and minced
- 8 large garlic cloves, minced
- fresh ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 lb fillo pastry, thawed
- 1/2 cup of olive oil
- 1/2 lb mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 2 medium ripe roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
- 3/4 lb feta cheese, crumbled
Heat oven to 375°F.
In a large skillet, heat the 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add onions and salt and saute until onion is tender. Add the basil, oregano, and spinach and stir-fry over med-high heat until spinach is limp and nearly all of the liquid has evaporated, about 5-8 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in garlic, pepper, and lemon juice.
Coat a large baking sheet with nonstick spray. Layer the leaves of fillo 1-2 at a time, brushing each with olive oil and keeping the unused leaves covered with a cloth to prevent them from drying out, until you have a stack of 10 leaves. Sprinkle fillo with mozzarella.
With a slotted spoon, place spinach mixture over mozzarella, draining off any remaining liquid. Spread over the mozzarella, leaving a small border of fillo at edges.
Arrange tomato slices over spinach mixture. Top with feta.
Bake at 375°F for 30 minutes, until fillo is golden and crispy and cheese is melted. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.