Spanakopita casserole.

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Strange week for meal planning. Despite the fact we've entered spring, waking up to snow on the ground two days in a row makes me continue to crave hearty winter foods. I tried to fuse winter and spring yesterday, producing a Spanakopita Casserole type dish. This recipe called to me because, like most things I test out, it's super simple, plus, it's nutritionally a killer choice (i.e. lots of protein and fiber). Spanakopita Casserole See original version seen here.

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 3 bags fresh spinach (9 oz a piece)
  • 1 egg white
  • 2/3 cup feta, crumbled
  • 4-6 sheets phyllo dough (whole wheat if you can find it)
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon of Smart Balance Light, divided

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Stir in the pepper and onions and let this cook for about 2 minutes.
  3. Start to add the spinach in large batches. Wait a few minutes between each batch until all the spinach is in the pan. Cover the pan and let the mixture cook for about 10 minutes.
  4. Pour the spinach mixture into a colander and let it drain for a few minutes before transferring to a large bowl to cool thoroughly. Once it's cool, mix in the egg white and follow by folding in the feta. Stick this in the fridge for a few.
  5. Spray casserole dish with cooking spray to prepare it for phyllo dough. Taking one sheet at a time, cover the casserole dish with the phyllo dough making sure to cover every inch of the bottom and leaving a few inches hanging over the edge.
  6. Once the phyllo dough is in place, pour the spinach mixture over the phyllo layers and spread into an even layer.
  7. Fold the excess phyllo over the spinach mixture, so no spinach should be visible. Drop the divided up Smart Balance over top the phyllo.
  8. Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes or until lightly brown and crispy. Let it sit for 15 min or so before serving.

Serves 6.  A super light version of the classic Greek dish, each serving has roughly 150 calories with 8 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein. Leftovers are just as good the next day!