Lamb, spinach and feta filo parcels recipe image

Print Lamb, spinach and feta filo parcels

Light but filling packages of filo pastry. These are a little fiddly to make, but bursting with wonderful flavour and texture. It's important to keep the sheets of filo covered with a damp tea towel to stop them drying out. Serve the parcels with yoghurt mixed with a little lemon juice and freshly chopped mint, and with a side salad.

Ingredients

  • 250g spinach, stalks removed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ large or 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 450g lamb mince
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried mint
  • 1 tsp sumac (or use finely grated lemon zest)
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 200g feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 packets ready-made filo pastry sheets
  • 150g butter, melted

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 190°C/Gas 5.
  2. In a large pan of boiling water, blanch the spinach leaves for 2 minutes. Drain and plunge into a bowl of cold water to refresh. Drain again, then squeeze out the excess moisture with your hands. You’ll now have a ball of spinach – chop it finely and leave to one side.
  3. In a large frying pan, heat the oil. Add the onion and fry for a few minutes, until softened. Add the lamb and fry on a medium heat until the mixture has browned all over. Add the cumin and dried mint and season well. Cook for another couple of minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and add the sumac (or lemon zest) and parsley. Stir to combine. Leave to cool completely, then gently stir in the feta cheese. Run a tea towel under cold water and squeeze until it is damp but not wet.
  5. Unwrap the filo pastry pack and lay the sheets out flat. Use the damp tea towel to cover the sheets you are not using. Brush a non-stick baking tray with a little of the butter. Take a sheet of filo, place on a large board or work surface and fold it once in half to make a square shape. Use a pastry brush to coat the pastry in melted butter.
  6. You can choose how you want to wrap your parcels, but the easiest way is to place about 3 dessertspoons of the lamb mixture to the right of the middle of the pastry sheet, in a rectangular shape, leaving a gap all around. Next, fold the top and bottom edges of the pastry over the lamb mixture, then the right hand edge over the top and gently roll the pastry from right to left to form a fat sausage-roll shape.
  7. Brush the filo with melted butter to seal, then place on the baking tray. Repeat until all the mixture is used. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and crispy.
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