In order to understand this conversation, you have to know what Sfinge is. Sfinge (pronounced SFEENJ. It rhymes with...nothing) is something Dan's Italian family has been making for decades. It's a dense, savory bread filled with meat, usually ground beef, and provolone cheese, and topped with lots of Oregano. Don't try to google it; you'll just come up with cream puffs. No really, you will.
Me, on the phone with Dan: How long do we have to keep the sfinge around?
Dan: Oh, yeah. It's probably not that great anymore.
Me: Question- Considering that sfinge is chocked full of meat and cheese, why doesn't it have to be refrigerated?
Dan: Well, you see, sfinge is a unique combination of special ingredients that have evolved to a point that they don't need to be refrigerated.
Me: ...OK. (Cutting myself a piece and starting to eat it)
Dan: On second thought, maybe you can throw it away.
Me: (Silent chewing.)
Dan: Or maybe you should feed it to the dogs first and see how they do.
Me: (Feeds piece to Dexter who gobbles it up and sprints away.) He seems fine. (Cuts self bigger piece.)
After a few minutes I decided week-old sfinge isn't that bad, and that my stomach felt fine, and proceeded to eat two of these.
So now if I die of food poisoning we'll never know the real cause. Just kidding. These are totally safe to eat and delicious. It would definitely be the sfinge.
Yield: 2 servings (but this recipe is easily doubled)
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 small onion (about 1/3 cup), small diced
1 clove garlic, minced
9 oz box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
salt and pepper
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 sheet puff pastry, thawed overnight in the fridge
Egg wash (1 egg beaten with a little milk or water, plus a pinch of salt)
1. Place a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add the oil, enough to mostly coat the bottom of the pan.
2. Add the onions and cook until translucent, 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another minute, or until fragrant. Add the spinach and dill, mixing just to combine.
3. Transfer the filling to a bowl and add feta cheese. Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking. Add the egg and mix to combine. Allow the filling to cool at least to room temperature.
4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. On a lightly floured board, roll out the puff pastry into a larger rectangle, until it is about 1/4'' thick. Cut the dough in half lengthwise. Cut each long piece into 3 equally-sized squares.
5. Place about 2 heaping tablespoons of filling into the center of each square. Brush the edges of each square lightly with egg wash. Fold the dough over, corner to corner, creating a triangle. Press down firmly to seal the edges with your fingers or a fork.
6. Place all the squares on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush with egg wash. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown. Allow to cool slightly, and serve warm.
- Spanikopita is traditionally made using phyllo dough instead of puff pastry, but puff is what I had in my freezer and can be a little easier to work with.
- I like to taste the filling before adding any salt because feta can be very salty and usually I find I don't need to add any. Just remember to taste it before adding the raw egg!
- You can make these squares as large or as small as you want. Serve smaller ones as an appetizer or larger ones for lunch or a vegetarian dinner.
- I had a little filling leftover so I added the extra egg wash to it and baked it in greased mini muffin cups for about 10 minutes.
Ta-da! Mini crust-less quiches!