Awhile back I made these Chicken Pocket Pies and they were fabulous. The dough worked out perfectly, angels sang, and we left nothing but pie dust in the kitchen. Remember?
I've been "trying" to bring spinach back into Cooper's diet so I thought these Spinach Feta Pocket Pies might do the trick! Plus this momma loves spanakopita, and these are pretty similar (except they're made with cream cheese pastry instead of phillo dough).
I whipped up the pastry dough the night before using light cream cheese instead of full fat. I am soo happy to report that it tastes just fine! A bullet has been dodged, people. We can have a tasty lower fat pie crust and eat it too!
The spinach pockets were super. I was delighted every time I got a chunk of feta in a bite. Next time I am going to add a little more cheese to the filling. Oh man do I love feta! The pies totally satisfied my spanakopita cravings!
In this batch, I made three normal sized pockets and the rest were Cooper-sized. The ones for Coop would have made perfect appetizers for a party. So I am going to save this recipe in the appetizer file in my brain. I suggest you do the same! This pie dough is so versatile that my mind is buzzing with possible future combos to make with it!
Maybe I'll make little calzones next? Or something with broccoli and cheddar?
Anyways...Let's get started!
Make the dough first. Give it enough time to chill in the fridge. Doing it the night before saves you a bunch of time!
While the dough is chilling, get your spinach mixture organized!
Start by sweating your onions. They need to be translucent.
Defrost some frozen chopped spinach and get rid of the excess moisture. Add the spinach to the onions.
Cook the spinach, then cool it. Get your dill, beaten egg & feta ready.
Add the egg, cheese and dill to the cooled down spinach and mix!
After the spinach mixture chills for a bit, get ready to roll out your dough!
Make a little assembly line. Don't overfill the pies!
Seal them up with some water, your fingers and a fork. Poke holes in the top to vent! Fork yeah!
Put those beauties on a baking sheet and pat yourself on the back.
Damn you're good! Now take that egg and brush it on the top of each pie.
Bake in the oven and TRY not to eat one immediately out of the oven. It will burn your tongue. Trust me.
Spinach Feta Pocket Pot Pies
(recipe from Mad Hungry: Feeding Men & Boys)
- 1 tablespoon extra- virgin olive oil
- 2 cups chopped spinach, squeezed of liquid and chopped (i used frozen)
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 tablespoon dried dill
- 1 recipe (2 disks) Cream Cheese Pastry (recipe below)
- 1 large egg, for egg wash
To make the filling, heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, and saute until the onion is translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in the spinach and salt and cook to fully combine, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool slightly. Mix in the beaten egg, cheese, and dill. Chill.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
To form the pocket pies, work with half of a disk of dough at a time, rolling it out on a floured surface to about 12 inches in diameter. Using an overturned bowl (about 5 inches across), cut out about 3 circles from each piece of dough. After cutting out all your circles, gather all dough scraps, re-roll, and cut out a final time. Place 1/4 cup filling on one side of a dough circle. Wet the edges of the dough with water. Fold the dough over to form a half-circle. Pinch the edges of the dough together. Crimp the edges with a fork. Repeat the process until all the filling is used. The pocket pies can be frozen at this point.
Place the pocket pies on the prepared baking sheet and chill for a few minutes. Prick each pie on top twice with a fork. When ready to bake, beat the egg with 1 tablespoon water. Brush the egg wash over each pocket pie. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Let rest for 5 minutes before serving. The pies can be cooled and frozen to reheat in the microwave.
Cream Cheese Pastry
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out dough
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
In a food processor or using an electric mixer or by hand, process the butter, cream cheese and heavy whipping cream.
Add the flour and salt; process just until combined and the dough holds together in a ball. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and divide into 2 pieces. Flatten into disks and wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before rolling out. If the dough is chilled overnight, take it out 15 minutes before rolling out.
Rub flour all over a rolling pin. Working with one disk at a time, place the disk on a clean, well-floured surface. Roll gently from the center of the dough to the top and bottom edges. Rotate the disk, and roll to the top and bottom edges again. Re-flour the work surface and rolling pin, turn the dough over and continue to roll the dough from the center out to the edges. Turn over and roll again, rotating the disk to ensure even rolling until the dough is about 12 inches in diameter, thin but not transparent.