CHEF/PROPRIETOR Tom Teknos of The Hudson Café in downtown Detroit credits generations of his Greek family for this recipe for spanakopita (spinach pie). But, he adds, “I just had to put some of my own touches on it. I added the green onion, cottage cheese, buttering each piece of phyllo dough. That way, the phyllo rises while cooking. I think it gives it much better plate appeal.”
> SPINACH PIE
3 pounds fresh spinach
6 eggs (separated)
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1/2 cup dill, chopped
1/2 pound feta cheese
1/2 pound cottage cheese
3 teaspoons (each) salt and white pepper
1/2-3/4 pound pastry (phyllo) sheets
1/2-3/4 pound butter
1 additional egg, whipped
Clean and chop spinach and boil 3-4 minutes. Drain. When spinach cools, press to release all water. Put spinach in a large bowl; add egg yolks, mix, and set aside.
In a small pot, sweat both types of onion for about 4-5 minutes, making sure they don’t brown. Add dill to onions while they cook. When finished, add to the spinach. In the same bowl, add the feta, cottage cheese, salt and pepper and mix together. Beat egg whites until firm and add to the mixture.
Grease the bottom of a 9-by-13 pan and begin adding the pastry sheets, brushing each sheet with butter as you add it. Put 6-8 sheets of pastry on the bottom. Top with the spinach mixture and spread evenly. Add remaining 6-8 pastry sheets to the top.
With a knife, score the top of the pastry with small cuts to make 12 pieces. Take one more egg, whip it, and brush it on the top of the pie.
Bake at 350 about 1 hour, or until the pie is nicely golden brown.