My sister, except for a brief period of time, has been vegetarian her whole life. When I took over Thanksgiving duties from my mother — something that made both of us happy — I made it a point to include a main dish that worked with my sister’s dietary restriction. That dish was a riff on spanakopita, a phyllo dough-wrapped spinach dish. I made mine as a casserole, featuring rice.
What I didn’t know at the time was that I was feeding my sister — and me — something that was making us very sick. We are both now gluten free and much healthier for it!
But I do miss that dish. It was a perfect vegetarian (though not vegan) main course, packed with flavor and nutrition. I’ve finally taken the time to recreate the dish, this time using thinly sliced potatoes in place of phyllo. As with that long-ago dish, this one was a hit (and gone the next day!).
Potato Crust Spinach Pie
By April 17, 2016Published:
- Yield: 5 Servings
- Prep: 30 mins
- Cook: 30 mins
- Ready In: 60 mins
All the goodness of spanakopita, none of the gluten! This is a great vegetarian main course.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 2 russet potatoes thinly sliced, about 1/8"
- 1 medium white onion diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 10-ounce bags frozen chopped spinach thawed, drained, and wrung dry
- 1/4 cup mint leaves chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
- 1 large egg lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup ricotta cheese or a mix of ricotta and cottage cheese
- 1 cup feta cheese crumbled
- Preheat your oven to 375.
- Lightly oil two baking sheets. Spread out the potato slices on the sheets and lightly season with salt and pepper. Bake in oven about ten minutes -- you want the potatoes to be soft and pliable, but not cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- While the potatoes are cooking, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet. Add the onion and cook until just translucent. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Remove from heat.
- Squeeze the spinach to remove as much moisture as possible, then place in a large bowl. Add the onion, garlic, mint, parsley, nutmeg, salt and pepper, egg, and cheeses. Mix thoroughly.
- Lightly oil a pie pan. Line the pan with potato slices, working in a circular motion until the bottom is lined. Line the sides of the pan with potato slices arranged so they hang over the edge of the pan.
- Fill the pie pan with the spinach mixture. Fold the edges of the potatoes over the spinach mixture to form a partial crust. If you have extra potato, you can add to the top of the spinach mixture for extra crunch.
- Bake at 375 degrees for about thirty minutes, or until the feta starts to melt and the pie is cooked through. Watch the potatoes so they don't burn -- turn down the heat if necessary.