Filling (Makes about 3 cups):
12 oz baby spinach, about 8 cups (Can substitute 1 cup packed frozen spinach)
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon fresh dill, finely chopped
5 oz feta cheese, about 3/4 cup
1 Tablespoon ground sumac
1 lemon, juiced
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
10 sheets white phyllo dough (9”x 14”) + extra in case of breakage
(whole wheat phyllo is not recommended)
Tzatziki Sauce (Makes 1 1/2 cups):
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, grated and drained (squeeze all of the water out)
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Blanch Spinach: Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Working in batches, place spinach in the water and let wilt for 30 seconds. Remove with a skimmer to a colander. Repeat until all of the spinach has been blanched.
Squeeze/Chop Spinach: Cool the spinach under running water. When cool enough to handle, remove as much of the liquid as possible by squeezing the spinach with your hands or place handfuls into a ricer and gently expel all of the water. Coarsely chop spinach and place into a medium bowl.
Chop Ingredients: Finely chop the shallots, garlic and dill and add them to the chopped spinach. Crumble the feta into the bowl and add the sumac, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mix well with a fork to break up the spinach.
Roll Cigars: Melt the butter. Take a sheet of phyllo and lay it on the work surface with the long side facing you (keep the rest of the phyllo covered by plastic wrap and a damp towel until ready to use). Brush half of the sheet with melted butter. Fold the sheet in half and brush with butter again. Cut the sheet into thirds, about 3 inch lenghts . Place 1 tablespoon of the filling onto the end of each one of the three pieces, keeping ½ inch bare on each side. Carefully roll the filling in the phyllo about one-third of the way. Fold the sides inward, brush with more butter, and roll the rest of the way. Repeat with the remaining phyllo and filling.
Bake Cigars: Place the cigars on a baking sheet and again, brush well with the butter. Bake for 7 minutes. Rotate the sheet and bake for 7 more minutes or until golden.
Grate Cucumber: Peel the cucumber, cut it in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds with a teaspoon. Grate the halves with a box grater with large holes. Squeeze out all of the water from the cucumber with your hands and place into a medium bowl.
Mix Sauce: Combine all of the other ingredients with the cucumber and mix well. Let the sauce sit for 10 minutes for flavors to blend. Transfer to a small serving bowl and garnish with a sprig of dill.
Serve: Platter the cigars and serve with the tzatziki.
Recipe created by Parties That Cook®
Makes 20 Cigars