Yesterday was my 32nd birthday. We basically spent the weekend celebrating. Saturday was an outing with some friends in Doylestown, PA (post coming within the week) and Sunday was spent reading the onslaught of internet well wishes and talking on the phone with friends and family. Thinking about it still makes me feel mighty special.
My birthday was a gold mine of blog inspiration between the PA trip and the 25 year old bottle of balsamic vinegar that my friend Shannon got me (!!!). The focus for today will be the lovely dinner we had with the inlaws last night.
My mother-in-law is always very thoughtful when it comes to fixing meat free stuff and I always appreciate it. If she makes spaghetti, she always makes me a small pot of marinara sauce. For Thanksgiving, I know I can count on a small pan of stuffing that wasn't cooked inside of the turkey. She knows that I absolutely love it when she makes spanikopita and so she decided to throw down for my birthday.
She always refers to it as Spinach Pie. Chris and I hopefully don't sound too much like foodie elitists we call it spanakopita. She did call him a wise ass over the phone the other day when he said it! The recipe actually comes from her sister-in-law, Madeline (who is Greek). Consider it your party favor. ;-)
2 bags of spinach
6 eggs, beaten
1/4-1/2 lb of butter, melted
2 large onions, minced
Filo dough (in the frozen section of your grocery store)
1.5-2 lbs of feta cheese
Allow your filo to defrost in the fridge the day you are planning to make this dish.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a large bowl: Mix spinach, eggs, half of the butter, onions and feta cheese. Add enough flour to soak up extra juice.
Butter the bottom of the pan Layer the bottom and the side of the pan with filo dough. Put one half of the spinach mixture in the pan and cover it with 6-8 lightly buttered sheets of filo. Add the rest of the spinach mixture and top with more buttery filo layers. Fold in the sides. Add butter to the top.
Bake for an hour and check for doneness. Add an additional fifteen minutes if it needs it.
For dessert, I always request a cherry pie from Delicious Orchards on my birthday. It's one of my favorite things. The pies at Delicious Orchards are amazing but on the pricey side so we usually save them for a special occasion.
This place is pretty awesome though. They have a huge bakery as well as a nice selection of cooking ingredients. There is a deli, a lovely produce section and all sorts of delightful edibles tucked here, there and throughout. Everything from mustards to extracts. I recommend stopping in if you're in the mood for something a little bit special.
320 State Route 34
Colts Neck, NJ 07722