Inspired by Greek spanakopita (or spinach phyllo pie), these mini hand-held versions have a hearty dose of shredded rotisserie chicken added for good measure. That addition makes them perfectly filling to satisfy your guests’ rumbling bellies until the main event.
With creamy ricotta, salty feta, savory garlic and a unique blend of not-quite-traditional Greek spices, these mini pies can be made a few hours ahead of time and reheated in the oven just before serving.
One last tip: don’t fear the phyllo. The key is keeping it covered while you work. I like to lay it out on the counter, then cover it with a layer of plastic wrap topped with a damp dish towel. Keeping the paper-thin sheets covered will prevent it from drying out and crumbling to bits.
Mini Chicken-Ricotta Phyllo Pies
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Spice Islands Lemon Peel
- 1 teaspoon Spice Islands Crushed Red Pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon Spice Islands Marjoram
- 6 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded (about 3 cups)
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon Spice Islands Fine Grind Black Pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon Spice Islands Fine Sea Salt
- 1 package (24 sheets) phyllo dough
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 375ºF.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and spices, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add spinach and cook until wilted, another 1 to 2 minutes. Let cool slightly, then transfer to a cutting board and coarsely chop.
- In a bowl, combine spinach mixture with ricotta and feta cheeses. Stir in shredded chicken, egg, salt and pepper until combined.
- Lay one sheet of phyllo dough on a flat surface. Brush lightly with melted butter, then top with another sheet. Repeat, layering a total of 6 sheets. Cut stack in half, lengthwise, then in thirds, crosswise, forming 6 squares. Gently press each square into a muffin tin.
- Repeat with remaining dough, creating 3 more stacks of 6, for a total of 24 cups.
- Divide chicken-ricotta mixture among cups. Fold corners in to center, brushing with butter as needed so the corners stick in place.
- Bake for 23 to 25 minutes or until tops are lightly golden-brown. Let cool slightly, then transfer to a serving platter; serve warm.