Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Easy Spanakopita and Caprese Salads

Sully, who tries to knock me into the oven nightly.
My favorite meal is appetizers.  All those yummy, small bites, often involving cheese are a favorite for everyone in the house.  One problem is to make a meal of them you need several which is a lot to do in the kitchen.  My trick is to make a variety involving different techniques.  For example, our dinner included one cold salad: caprese, one hot made to order: spanakopita, and one make ahead and reheat: Cooking Light's Japanese Meatballs.


1 bag or 1 bunch fresh spinach
1/2 cup Red bell pepper
1/2 cup onion
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup feta cheese
1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
1 package mini fillo shells (you can use the sheets, but the shells are what makes this recipe so quick and easy)

Add the butter/olive oil to a saute pan over medium high heat.   Dice the onion, bell pepper and garlic and add to the saute pan.  Cook for 3-5 minutes, until soft and translucent. 

Add all of the spinach and cover the pan, this will allow the spinach to steam.  After 1-2 minutes, the spinach will be wilted.  Turn off the stove and add the spinach mixture to a food processor with the feta and salt and pepper.  Pulse until just chopped. 

Spoon the filling into the fillo shells and bake in a 425 degree oven for 3-5 minutes, until warm through and a little toasty on top.

Caprese Salads
Ingredients and directions:
Place 2 or 3 slices of fresh mozzerella on the bottom of your salad plate.

Top with sliced fresh tomatoes and sliced fresh basil.

Drizzle with olive oil and balsalmic vinegar and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.  Ummm. 

I served these two with Cooking Light's Tsukune or Japanese meatballs.  I oven baked, instead of grilled them, and they were delicious.   (