Sam’s spanakopita with walnuts, pine nuts, silverbeet and mint
100g butter, melted
1 onion, finely chopped
1 fennel bulb, cored and finely sliced,
fronds reserved and chopped
1 large bunch of silverbeet, washed
250g filo pastry
Zest of 2 lemons
100g feta, crumbled
50g cheddar, grated
100g cottage cheese or ricotta
½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped ¼ cup pine nuts, toasted
Large handful of mint leaves, chopped
Large handful of flat-leaf parsley, stalks
Handful of rocket
Salt and black pepper
PREHEAT the oven to 180ºC.
1. Add a little olive oil and 1 tbsp of the butter to a large saucepan over a medium heat and let it bubble and foam up. Add the onion and fennel bulb; cook gently for 5 minutes until translucent. 2. Chop the silverbeet stalks finely, add to the onion mix, cook until softened, then slice the leaves and cook until slightly wilted. Remove from the heat. Grease a roasting tray with some of the melted butter and line with 4 layers of filo, ensuring a bit of overlap over the sides, brushing each sheet with melted butter in between.
3. Add the lemon zest, feta, cheddar, cottage cheese or ricotta, grated nutmeg and beaten egg to the cooled silverbeet mixture and combine. Fold in the walnuts, pine nuts, mint, parsley, rocket and reserved fennel fronds, then season.
4. Spread the mixture onto the pastry, smooth off, then layer with more filo, brushing each sheet with butter. Trim and pinch the edges together, brush the top with a little more butter, then bake for 25-30 minutes until golden.