I love spinach. In any form. Give it to me raw (baby spinach salad), boiled, simply sautéed, cooked in masalas or mixed in béchamel to be served with pasta. So when I saw the Spinach and Feta Fatayers on Barry Véra’s Feast Bazaar episode on Syrian street food, I couldn’t help but drool. (Here’s the video.)
A few weeks later, staring at a chunk of particularly dry feta cheese, I knew I had to try making them at home. As usual, I didn’t have most of the required ingredients and was also feeling a little lazy to look up the detailed recipe, so I went ahead and created my own version, using whole wheat flour (instead of puff pastry), blanched spinach, feta cheese and raisins. Though not half as tempting as the real stuff, they made for an excellent evening snack and accompaniment to a glass of rosé.
I have since looked up and memorized the recipe and will hopefully make it again in the near future – this time closer to the original recipe:
500 g blanched spinach
250 g feta cheese
1 medium sized onion, chopped finely
1/2 tsp. all spice powder
1 tsp. sumac
400 g puff pastry
Salt and pepper to taste
Raisins (optional, since this is my addition to the recipe)
Heat olive oil in a pan and light fry the onions till tender. Add the spinach, spices, feta cheese, raisins and seasoning and mix well.
Roll out the puff pastry into 10 cm rounds and fill each round with a scooped spoon of the spinach mixture. Bring up three sides of the round to form a pyramid and pinch the edges to seal it.
Place the pies / fatayars on a baking sheet, brush lightly with some olive oil and bake in a preheated oven for 25 to 30 mins at 180 C. Serve hot. 🙂