Hortopita - Greek spinach and chard filo pie

A lighter version of a tasty tart that celebrates healthy green leaves

  • place PRE
  • place COOK
  • place SERVES 6 - 8
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Spritzing the pastry with olive oil spray instead of brushing with melted butter makes light work of preparing the filo and cuts out on all that saturated fat. For 3-4 people, halve the ingredients, and bake the pie in a 20cm tin for 20-25 minutes. You can keep it (unbaked) in the fridge for 1 day or frozen for up to 3 months.

Recipe adapted from To Life! Healthy Jewish Food

  • For the filling, trim and thinly slice the spring onions. Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a frying pan and cook the white part of the spring onions with a pinch of salt for 3 minutes until golden.
  • Finely chop or shred the greens, add to the pan and sprinkle with the salt (to preserve their lovely colour) Sauté quickly for 3-4 minutes.
  • Whisk the eggs and seasonings in a large bowl and add the green part of the spring onions, cheese and greens from the pan. Mix well with a fork and leave to cool slightly.
  • Lightly oil a 25mm shallow loose-bottomed cake or flan tin.
  • Count out 8 sheets of filo pastry, return the rest to the pack, and quickly cover the 8 sheets with a cloth so they don’t dry out.
  • Lightly spray or brush the first sheet of filo with oil then lay it in the tin with the edges overhanging the sides. Oil another sheet and lay it on top at a right angle. Repeat with the remaining sheets.
  • Spoon the filling into the centre then bring the overhanging pastry in, pleating it slightly, to partially cover the filling (or cover it completely if you prefer).
  • Lightly brush or spray the top of the pastry with oil then sprinkle with the seeds.
  • Make the creamy dill sauce by whisking the ingredients together then transfer to a small serving dish and chill until needed.
  • About an hour before serving, preheat the oven to 200°C. Bake pie for 30-40 minutes or until a rich golden brown then transfer to a cooling rack, still in the tin.
  • When ready to serve, remove the pie from the tin but leave it on the metal base then transfer to a serving board or platter. Drizzle the vegetables in the centre with a little extra virgin olive oil and serve the pie in wedges with a mixed salad, passing sauce around separately.

2 bunches spring onions

900g any combination of baby spinach, shredded spring greens or finely chopped Swiss chard

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

½ tsp fine sea salt

2 large eggs

3 tbsp chopped fresh dill (or 2 tsp dried dill or mint)

20 grinds of black pepper

½ tsp ground or grated nutmeg

225g crumbled feta, salad cheese or Lancashire cheese

8 sheets (about 350 g) filo pastry

Olive oil spray

2-3 tbsp sesame or nigella (onion) seeds

For the sauce

225g Greek yoghurt

½ a finely diced cucumber

2 tsp finely chopped dill

½ tsp salt

1 clove crushed garlic

8 grinds of black pepper

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