Sunday, September 14, 2008

On-The-Fly Pie(-ish)

When it comes to meals, life is interesting at our house. E has a ton of culinary experience and talent, and is a strict vegetarian with a varied palette who will try just about anything (meatless, of course!), I, on the other hand, have never so much as taken a cooking class but loves meats and fish and all kinds of goodies. I also have a very sensitive palette, so there's a lot of things that just put me off, but I will usually try at least a bite of anything (check out the Omnivore 100 post below for proof).

In part because I'm the one at home, and in part of my love for cooking, I make dinners 90% of the time, and I also make E's lunches for work. As much I sometimes complain about that, I actually really enjoy making his lunch. Not only does it allow for dinners to do double-duty but there are days when I swear it helps make the day a little brighter. Usually, I play it safe, making things I know we both enjoy. In the last week or so, I've been a little more creative, which has been a lot of anticipation, fun and excitement, even if it doesn't always turn out the way I planned.

On Tuesday, I wanted quiche. The fact that I've never made quiche before didn't stop me, and I didn't even bother looking up a recipe, because how hard could it be? I also didn't have any pie crust, nor did I have the ingredients to make pie crust, so I decided to use phyllo dough instead. I also decided that I wanted to revamp leftovers from the night before, namely Indian stewed vegetables, and use up some amazing fresh dill we'd purchased from Jungle Jim's. It actually turned really well, and E really enjoyed it, even more so the next day in his lunch.

However, as it turns out, I'm not good at making quiche. But apparently, I can make a mean spanakopita!

Since this was completely thrown together, there's not really a recipe, but I'll do my best! Just remember that anything can be substituted, and it's really to taste.

Carly's on-the-fly Spanakopita
yields 4 servings

  • 15 oz. part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup Egg Beaters
  • 2 cups cooked vegetables
  • 2 Tbsp fresh dill
  • 13 sheets phyllo dough
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Combine the ricotta, egg beaters and vegetables in a medium bowl, and stir until combined.
  3. Snip the dill roughly into mixture, stir again and set aside.
  4. Take 6 pieces of phyllo dough and layer in a 10-inch round cake pan, either spraying or brushing a little bit of oil or butter between each layer except for the last one in.
  5. Prick the phyllo with a fork, both to prevent it from getting too soggy, and to better cook the filling.
  6. Pour filling into the pan, and smooth until level.
  7. Take 4 more sheets of phyllo, and repeat layering process. Use remaining 3 sheets to crumple and place on top for some extra crunch.
  8. Bake until filling is cooked through, or about 30 minutes.
I'm submitting this to this month's Tasty Tools hosted by Joelen at Joelen's Culinary Adventures. September's theme is Bakeware, which this fits perfectly in. The 10 inch round cake pan I used was actually E's late grandmother's, so it has extra special meaning to us.


Donna said...

I have always found cooking so much more enjoyable when I make something up on the fly with no more instruction than my imagination and the ingredients I have on hand. My successes are anazingly good (although not always able to be duplicated) and my failures amazingly bad (remember the pasta with guacamole seasoning)

Jenn said...

its only 8am and you just made me very hungry for dinner, I wish i had time at the end of every day to cook. I love to cook!even if i dont know what im doing lol.