It’s pot luck this week at IHCC & this pie jumped off the page, making the most of piles of herbs & greens it lured me in to more green deliciousness from Ottolenghi. Really is their anyone else out there that makes greens so appealing? He makes them seem indulgent, a treat & not in the least little bit virtuous.
Ottolenghi says “I was going to say this serves six, but my partner and niece had a go at it while I was writing, so now I'll have to say it feeds four, or two greedy ones.” I am glad to hear this as when I have made half portions of these & these I have scoffed the lot, all under the pretense that they are full of good for you greens rather than the fact they are fritters or pancakes doused in chilli lime butter.
I would agree that this pie serves 4 not 6, it is just too good & you will want to go back for a little more. And again given all the greens & the filo I find it is a guilt free pie.
Herb Pie, from Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem
You can use spinach instead of chard, but you'll need more because of its high water content. Or you could use silver beet or cavolo nero as I did.
70ml olive oil
1 large onion, peeled and diced
500g Swiss chard, stems and leaves thinly shredded and kept separate (I used cavolo nero)
150g celery, thinly sliced
50g spring onion, chopped
50g rocket leaves
30g parsley, chopped
30g mint, chopped
20g dill, chopped
120g ricotta, crumbled
100g mature cheddar, grated
60g feta, crumbled
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 free-range eggs
⅓ tsp salt
½ tsp coarsely ground black pepper
Pinch chilli flakes
½ tsp caster sugar
100g melted butter
Pre heat the oven to 180C/350F
Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a deep skillet &, on medium heat, sauté the onion for eight minutes without browning until it is soft & translucent. Add the chard stems & celery, cook for four minutes, stirring occasionally, then add the chard leaves, raise the heat & cook, stirring, for four minutes more, until wilted. Add the spring onion, rocket & herbs, cook for two minutes & transfer to a colander. Once cool, squeeze out as much liquid as you can, transfer to a bowl & mix in the cheeses, zest, eggs, salt, pepper, chilli flakes & sugar.
Lay out a sheet of filo & brush it with butter. Cover with another sheet & repeat until you have five layers of filo brushed with butter, covering an area large enough to line the sides & base of a 22cm pie dish, with a little extra overhanging the edges. Line the dish with the filo, top with the herb mix & roughly fold over the excess pastry over the filling.
Scrunch up the rest of the filo pastry & place on top. Brush with a little more butter & bake for 40 minutes, until the filo turns crisp & golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature with a little salad on the side.
Love! What a surprise right? There is something about cheese & spinach wrapped in filo that appeals. Delivering all the comfort of a pie but in a slightly lighter, healthier way as I have done here & here. Here actually without fail is the most popular post on Toast week in week out; so it looks like I am not alone. So if filo cheese & spinach is your thing give this one a go....you will not be disappointed.
If you like this you might like this Roast Vegetable Frittata
One year ago Warm Red & Green (& Good for you Rice)
Two years ago Caramelised Fennel & Goat's Cheese