- 240 g cake flour
- ½ t salt
- 1 x 250 g Philadelphia cream cheese
- 230 g chilled butter, cubed
- 1 t lemon juice
- For the filling
- 200 g baby spinach
- 2 T olive oil
- 200 g bacon, chopped
- ¼ t ground nutmeg
- ¼ t ground allspice
- 2 T chopped parsley
- 100 g pine nuts
- 2 T lemon juice
- 200 g Woolworths barrel-aged feta
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 free-range egg 1, lightly beaten
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
To make the pastry, place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl and gently rub the cream cheese butter and lemon juice into the flour.
Once incorporated, knead the dough on a clean, floured surface until it forms a ball. Cover with clingwrap and chill for 30 minutes. Remove the clingwrap and roll out to a thickness of 5 mm on a clean, floured surface, then chill once more while you make the filling.
To make the filling, bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil. Blanch the spinach for 30 seconds, then place in iced water immediately to stop the cooking process.
Heat the olive oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the bacon and fry until crisp. Chop the blanched spinach and add it to the bacon.
Add the nutmeg, allspice, parsley, pine nuts (see alternative below) and lemon juice and sauté for 2 minutes.
Remove from the heat, crumble in the feta and season to taste. Set aside and allow to cool.
Remove the pastry from the fridge and, using a sharp knife, cut out 15 cm x 15 cm squares.
Spoon the cooled filling into the centre of each pastry square and brush the edges of each square with the beaten egg.
Bring the corners of the pastry together and gently pinch closed to form parcels.
Chill the parcels for 30 minutes, then bake for 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Cook’s note: Blanching the spinach before you sauté it locks in the vibrant green colour that would otherwise be lost during the cooking process.
TASTE's take: These pies are perfect as an office lunch. You can use chopped almonds or macadamia nuts instead of the pine nuts.