A Greek pie made with a filling of spinach with cheese, which is encased in layers of buttered filo pastry, then baked until golden and puffy. Delicious served in small portions as a starter or canapé, or larger slices as a heavenly vegetarian main course.
Parmesan cheese is not truly vegetarian, as it contains animal rennet. To make this dish 100% vegetarian, omit the cheese or find a suitable vegetarian substitute made without animal rennet. In supermarkets look for the 'parmesan style hard cheeses' which are suitable for vegetarians.
As a confirmed meat eater I only approached the recipe due to veggie friends staying. What a FANTASTIC dish!! Loved every mouthfull - not at all what I was expecting. Will do this pie again for just my wife and I in the near future. I found it impossible to to buy filo - so I used puff pastry - worked perfectly! - 21 Sep 2011
I can't believe it was so-o-o-o good. I, too, followed another reviewer's suggestions and used a 9x9 casserole dish, two packages of spinach and no cinnamon. Be sure you use a casserole deep enough because it can start out fairly high. I used olive oil instead of butter to brush the phyllo layers, and added some fresh garlic when I sauted the onions. Another step saver -- I thawed and drained the frozen spinach, then added it directly to the softened onions/garlic without steaming first. I can't wait to make this again! - 10 Oct 2006 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
Here's what I learned from making this dish: I wanted to cut the saturated fat (a cup is A LOT of grease!); I did this by mixing 1/4 each melted butter and olive oil. Also added about 1 scant tsp. nutmeg (the traditional Greek seasoning for this dish). I never use eggs in mine, as they make the mixture too wet, and the lovely phyllo gets soggy as a consequence. Nothing worse than soggy phyllo! I also only used half the phyllo and 2 10 oz. frozen packs spinach for the same reason. Kept the parm and swiss cheese and that was a really nice touch. I used only half the package of phyllo and baked in a 9 x 13 Pyrex dish until golden. Make sure you roll the edges and butter them (it makes a nice pizza-like crust). I serve this with a large Greek salad, and, on special occasions, get to serve it with the homemade baklava that my next door neighbor Georgia -- who is Greek -- brings by during the holidays. Good times. - 17 Nov 2008 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)