Today is National Spinach day!! OK, not officially in New Zealand, but we are a global nation, right!! So, why National Spinach day you might ask and what happened to National Broccoli or National Cauliflower day? Who knows, but one thing we do know and that is that Popeye loved his Spinach and probably as a result contributed highly to the consumption of Spinach in the average American household.
I am not known for my cooking skills and so I have asked my very clever personal Vegan Chef, Sanchia, (my 17 year old daughter) if she would be my food contributor on the blog. Here is her first recipe, I hope you enjoy it. It is absolutely delicious and you wouldn’t know that it didn’t have any dairy in it at all.
Cashew “feta” – 1c raw cashews (boiled 25mins and drained) – 2tbsp white vinegar – 1tbsp water – Salt to taste
Spinach Filling – 5/6 Spring onions, sliced (white and light green only) – ½ brown onion, diced – 400-500g baby spinach – 1/4c fresh parsley, finely chopped – 2-3tbsp dried dill – 3-4 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped – Salt and pepper to taste –
Filo pastry – Olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 180c
2. In a food processor/nutribullet, add all ingredients for the cashew “feta” (soaked drained cashews, vinegar, salt, and water). Pulse the mixture until you get a chunky but coarsely chopped texture. Taste and adjust salt as needed.
3. Brown the onions (both spring onion and regular) in a large high sided pan with a little oil, until soft and lightly browned.
4. Add spinach to pan a couple of handfuls at a time, sautéing until completely wilted. Turn off the heat.
5. Add dill, parsley, salt, pepper, and garlic to the pan and mix well. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl lined with a clean tea towel to cool slightly.
6. Gather the sides of the towel and spin / squeeze the spinach mix to drain as much liquid as possible before tipping drained spinach mix into another bowl.
7. Add cashew “feta” mixture into the bowl with the spinach and mix well.
8. Brush the bottom of your pan with a bit of olive oil and gently lay a filo sheet on top, continue layering the filo sheets with oil in between each layer until the bottom of the pan has around 5 layers.
9. Spread the spinach mixture on top, and gently scrunch the overhang of pastry over the filling.
10. If there is still a space left in the middle of your dish, brush oil over a sheet of filo, fold in half, and then scrunch gently into a rosette and tuck on top of the filling until the mixture is covered.
11. Brush the top with a little more oil and place into the preheated oven until browned, roughly 40-50 mins.
12. Wait to cool before slicing