Christmas is a mere 4 days away and this Jewish girl could not be more excited! Our holiday traditions include a bagel brunch for breakfast, a matinée with the kids (this year the chosen flick is Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse), and then an early dinner out at our favorite Chinese restaurant. We may even throw in a family game night. Traditiooooooon, tradition!
It’s the kind of lazy, low key day that makes me want to skip out on hosting major holidays altogether for the simple reason that everyone is relaxed, everyone has a chance to breathe, and there are no dishes to tend to at the end of the night. Basically, it’s heaven.
I like to make a big fuss over the meals leading up to Christmas since that night always includes a day of takeout or dining out. Quick weeknight meals are great and all, but sometimes I like to roll up my sleeves and really get into what I’m making. Trust me, the effort that goes into dishes like this are rewarded 10-fold. Also, I find making these totally therapeutic.
So what are they? Spanakopita spirals are just a fancy way of making good ol’ spinach pie. You’ve had it from Greek restaurants or diners layered into a casserole. This is just one more way of serving up the good stuff. And trust me when I say, it’s really freakin’ delicious.
Loaded with feta, cottage, cheese, copious amounts of spinach, and fresh herbs, all packed together in a crispy, crunchy, perfect little package. You will be hard pressed to stop after one.
I often serve these with another favorite dish — roasted chicken with lemon rice. God, even now just thinking about the two together has me drooling. Gonna have to come back and post that one in a bit, but for now, you need these spanakopita spirals in your life.
Merriest holiday wishes to all who celebrate Christmas! And to the rest of us, I hope your long weekend is filled with as much delicious food, family time, and magical moments as you can handle.
- 11 oz baby spinach
- 3 large eggs (lightly beaten)
- 10 oz cottage cheese
- 10 oz feta (crumbled)
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp lemon zest
- 2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
- 1 stick + 3 Tbsp unsalted butter (melted, divided)
- 1 16 oz package phyllo dough, (defrosted (18 sheets, 13"x18") -- I use a brand called The Fillo Factory)
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Place spinach in a food processor and pulse until just roughly chopped, working in batches as needed. Transfer to a large bowl.
- Add eggs, cottage cheese, feta, salt, pepper, lemon zest, and oregano, then mix well. Set aside.
- Set up your work station: have in front of you the spinach and cheese mixture, 1 stick of melted butter (reserve 3 Tbsp to brush on top), and grab a ½ cup measuring cup and 1 Tbsp measuring spoon.
- Unroll phyllo dough and working with one sheet at a time, spoon on 2-3 Tbsp melted butter. Quickly add another sheet of phyllo dough and repeat with butter. Don't worry about covering every inch with butter, it's not important. Just splash it on and move quickly. Top with a third sheet of phyllo and then pour on ¼-½ cup of filling along the bottom (long side) of the dough, leaving an inch of space on either end.
- Fold the dough over and around the filling, then roll up the phyllo into a long log. Carefully work the log into a spiral and transfer to a large skillet. Repeat with remaining sheets of phyllo and dough to create remaining spirals.
- Brush reserved melted butter on top, then bake for 50-60 minutes (mine are perfect at 55!), or until golden brown and crunchy. Serve immediately.