This delicious open top pie is inspired by a Spanakopita Pie. It is packed full of greens, cheeses, herbs and eggs that are encased in flaky puff pastry. This easy to assemble pie is full of flavour and can be served warm, straight from the refrigerator or at room temperature making it ideal for lunches, dinner and even picnics.
My family loves this pie. It is so versatile and can be eaten as a snack, part of a buffet or as a meal. Once the greens are chopped and cooked, the rest of the pie is very easy to put together. I have used store-bought ready rolled butter puff pastry making this even easier!
The filling of onions, silverbeet, leeks, garlic and spring onions is cooked in a combination of butter and olive oil then set aside to come to room temperature, before the fresh herbs (dill, parsley and more spring onions) and 3 cheeses are added (ricotta, feta, parmesan). Lastly lemon zest for freshness and nutmeg are added along with lightly beaten eggs. This combination is then added to the pastry before cooking in the oven.
The greens can be cooked a day ahead and refrigerated which can save time too. I often cook the filling the day before and then just add the herbs, cheese and eggs to it when ready to cook.
Why I love this recipe:
I just love the flavour of this pie which is packed full of greens and very tasty! It is very hard to stop at just one slice.
It is also an easy pie to make so is great for people who are nervous to work with pastry. I have used a good quality store-bought spelt butter puff pastry which you can see in the photos. I have previously used normal butter puff pastry which also works very well.
This pie recipe is very forgiving. For example, if you have slightly more or less silverbeet or add an extra egg, it doesn’t really matter too much.
It keeps for up to a week in the fridge and can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Ingredients to make this pie:
Don’t be put off by the longish list of ingredients – the processes are very simple. Once the greens have been sautéed and cooled, the pie comes together very quickly after that.
- Butter – salted or unsalted
- Olive Oil – you can use all butter or all olive oil but I do like the combination of the two in recipes like this.
- Onion – I use brown onions.
- Leeks – light part only not the tougher green parts.
- Garlic – fresh and crushed or finely chopped.
- Spring Onions – wash and trim – use both the white and green parts.
- Silverbeet – or Swiss Chard. I always use silverbeet in this pie as it doesn’t hold as much moisture as spinach does. You can use fresh spinach if you prefer although I recommend that you cook it off longer to reduce the extra liquid in the pan. I do prefer fresh greens in this pie but defrosted frozen spinach can be used, just make sure you squeeze out all the moisture from it.
- Dill and Parsley – both add a lovely freshness and flavour to the pie.
- Lemon Zest – also adds a beautiful freshness to the filling.
- Nutmeg – I love adding a small amount of aromatic nutmeg when using ricotta in dishes.
- Cheeses – I have used a combination of ricotta, feta and parmesan cheese for this pie. The ricotta adds a lovely creaminess without being heavy and the feta and parmesan add flavour.
- Eggs – I use 4-5 eggs in this recipe. The recipe states 5 eggs but I made it once and only had 4 and it tasted just as good. I always use XL or L eggs. The eggs are beaten and a small amount (1 tbsp) is set aside to use as an egg wash to brush the pastry.
- Salt and Pepper – use sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Pastry – this recipe uses good quality store-bought puff pastry. I love using an all butter puff pastry and use a local brand called Careme which you can see in the photos. They make a ‘spelt’ puff pastry which is available Australia wide, however any puff pastry will suffice. To make this pie I have used one of their standard sized sheets weighing 375g which is a rectangle measuring approximately 27cm by 36cm in size. If using another brand which often comes in square sheets, simply join 2 sheets together and trim to size. You could also make 2 smaller square pies too depending on the baking dish you are using.
Step by step instructions:
Tips and Tricks for Success:
When preparing the silverbeet, I find that chopping them up first before rinsing is the easiest way to do it. It is much less messy than chopping up rinsed leaves. Once the leaves are chopped, simply place them into a colander and rinse under running water, then set aside to drain while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
It is important to soften the onions and leeks which is why this takes 10 minutes. Don’t skimp on this step as the flavour that develops here is important. I always add salt at this stage as it helps draw out the moisture and develop flavour at an early stage. Also make sure the silverbeet is nicely wilted too and, more importantly, that most of the liquid is evaporated once it is cooked. Sometimes I will turn the heat up to ‘high’ for a minute at the end and stir to reduce if any liquid is remaining in the frying pan.
It is also important to let the silverbeet mixture cool down before adding the herbs and cheeses, otherwise the cheese will melt which is not intended. Set it aside in the pan to come to room temperature.
When adding the feta, crumble it in small pieces not big chunks. When zesting the lemon, use a fine zester to avoid long strands.
Placing the pastry sheet onto a piece of baking paper makes handling very easy. Simply lift the baking paper with the pastry on top and place it directly into the baking dish – no need to oil the pan. So quick and easy!
More recipes for you to try:
Another great pie to make which this one is based on is my Spanakopita Pie using filo pastry.
Or take a look at this Zucchini Slice which is a crustless savoury slice.
- Rectangle baking dish – 21cm x 30cm x 5cm (high) or 8.5inch x 12inch x 2inch (high)
- Large Frying Pan
- 25 g butter
- 1.5 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion peeled and finely chopped
- 4 leeks, white and pale green parts only trimmed, rinsed, sliced in half lengthways then chopped into 1cm pieces.
- 3/4 tsp coarse sea-salt
- 4 garlic cloves peeled and crushed
- 600 g silverbeet (1 bunch approximately 600g – 800g) stems cut and white parts removed. Leaves shredded into 1cm pieces and rinsed.
- 8 spring onions, white and green parts finely sliced
- 2/3 c flat leaf parsley (40g) chopped finely
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh dill packed
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg ground or freshly grated
- 150 g ricotta cheese
- 200 g feta cheese crumbled
- 70 g parmesan cheese grated
- 5 eggs extra large
- zest of 2 lemons
- 375 g puff pastry rectangle sheet
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Place the butter and olive oil into the frying pan over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, leeks and sea salt and cook, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes until softened and golden brown. Turn the heat down to low/medium if browning too quickly.Add the garlic, chopped silverbeet leaves and half of the chopped spring onions. Continue to cook for another 10 minutes until the silverbeet leaves have wilted and most of the liquid has evaporated from the pan. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool to room temperature – approximately 15 minutes.
- Once cooled, add the parsley, dill and remaining spring onions. Stir to combine. If making in advance you can refrigerate this mix and continue the following day. Otherwise crumble over the feta and add the ricotta, parmesan, nutmeg, black pepper and lemon zest. Fold this through gently, then add the beaten eggs saving some of the beaten egg for the egg wash to brush the pastry. Fold again and set the mixture aside.
- Take the defrosted pastry from the fridge. The pastry I use is one rectangle measuring approximately 27cm x 36cm (10.5in x 14in). If using squares, you can join 2 together and trim. Lay the pastry onto a sheet of baking paper that is larger than the pastry. Using 2 hands lift the baking paper with the pastry on top and place it directly into the baking pan. The baking paper will remain underneath the pastry. Press the pastry into the sides gently to mould into the pan (see photos). It should cover the base and come up the sides of the pan by approximately 2.5cm (1 inch) on each side.Spoon the silverbeet filling onto the pastry and spread it out evenly to cover the base and corners.Brush around the edge of the pastry with the remaining bit of beaten egg. Tip any leftover egg back into the mixture and stir in a little.
- Place the pie into the preheated oven and cook for 40 minutes or until the filling is set and the pastry is nicely golden. Remove and leave to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before serving.