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Pull-Apart Chicken Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don’t think anything could make me more excited right now.

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

You all know by now, how excited I get when I see spring starting to blossom. If I’d have to choose I’d say winter is my favorite season, but there’s something magical about early spring. The thing I love the most is to go out in the forest and pick fresh new wild foods. By now I’ve already picked the earlies small fragrant leaves of wild garlic and I’m waiting for more spring goodies to start growing.

I didn’t use wild garlic in the recipe, although it would fit in just perfectly.

Since we’re talking about wild food, I’d love to know your spring wild food favorites? 😀

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

Chicken Spanakopita

I love anything wrapped in phyllo dough or even making my own phyllo dough. Okay, I cheated with this one, I bought it 😉 But whenever I have time I make my own. It makes a huge difference. If you have the chance to find freshly made phyllo dough in your local food market, buy it. Your dishes will go from great to awesome.

I mean it!

Spanakopita is originally made without meat and in layers of phyllo dough. I added chicken for some extra flavor and to make my hubby happy 😀 I figured why not make it easier to serve and make it more like individual böreks. Imagine if börek and pie would have a baby, it would look like that! Wrapped in mini rolls and served without cutting.

The ingredients are pretty basic but delicious each on it’s own. For sure, spinach is the hero of the dish. And you can get amazing fresh baby spinach in spring in any food market. I like combining it with leeks, since it makes the food so incredibly sweet and fragrant. The combo with feta, chicken and nutmeg is so good.

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now. This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

To hold it all together, I made a ricotta, egg and cream mixture and poured it over the rolls. This also makes the pie dense and creamy in the bottom, but the top stays crunchy. So make sure you dont pour the mixture all the way to the top. 

It might no be a traditional spanakopita, but it is just as delicious and the main ingredients remain feta and spinach.

With some extra foodies 😉

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

These would be awesome at a picnic party or any party for that matter. They take a little time to assemble, but the cooking process is sooo simple. Since it is quite rich, you can actually feed up to about 8 people with it, if they are not huge hungry men 😉 or me!

This is by far my favorite spring pie and I’d serve it with spring strawberry layer cake in a glass following as dessert.

Picnic menu, done!

A glass of roasted peach and strawberry fizz to go along and you’re good to go 🙂

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Pull-Apart Chicken Spanakopita

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 6 people

Ingredients

Chicken Spanakopita

  • 16 sheets phyllo dough
  • 300 g chicken breast 1cm cubes (or use leftover chicken)
  • 1 small leak cut into quarter lenghtwise and thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 500 g fresh spinach (or frozen and drained of excess water)
  • 200 g feta cheese crumbled
  • 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Egg Mixture

  • 2 eggs
  • 60 g ricotta cheese
  • 60 ml whipping cream
  • a generous pinch of salt

Instructions

Egg mixture

  1. Mix all ingredients for egg mixture together with a fork or a whisk, to get a smooth creamy texture.

Filling

  1. In a preheated skillet roast chicken breast cubes with a tablespoon of olive oil for a minute or two until they get golden.

  2. Add leaks, garlic and spinach and cook uncovered for about a minute or until the spinach cooks down. I you're using baby spinach this will take a minute, older spinach takes two to three minutes. If there is any excess water in the skillet drain it before filling the pie otherwise it will get soggy.

  3. Remove from heat and add feta, nutmeg and black pepper. Mix well and set aside.

Assembly

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

  2. Line a 23 cm (9 inch) cake mold with baking paper.

  3. Lightly coat one pyhloo sheet with olive oil, cover with another phyllo sheet and coat with olive oil again. Over the long edge of the dough spread one eight of the filling about 4 cm wide. Roll the dough to get a long roll. Now roll this into a snail shape and place it in the cake mold. Repeat until you've used all the sheets. I like to start placing the rolls on the sides first and add the last one in the middles, since the last one usually has less or more filling than the others. This makes the pie look more even.

  4. Coat the tops with more olive oil and bake for 20 minutes.

  5. Remove from the oven and pour the egg mixture over the baked rolls.

  6. Return to the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes.

  7. Remove form the oven and wait for 5 minutes before removing the rim. Be careful, it's still hot!

  8. Serve warm or cold.

This chicken spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) is the best comfort food I can imagine for spring. Hearty and rich, flavored with cheeses, leeks and chicken, but also loaded with fresh spinach. And to top it all, it make s a perfect early picnic dish, since it is pull-apart. I don't think anything could make me more excited right now.

Mulled Wine Christmas Cheeseburger

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

Mulled wine in a burger… Say what?

Yes, well, if I can’t drink I’m at least eating mulled wine, although it sounds weird 🙂 But seriously, this is the most Christmas flavored burger I’ve ever had. And I can’t tell how beautifully the house smells after simmering the mulled wine for half an hour. It’s like a potpourri, but you can eat it afterwards 🙂

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

I’m all about Christmas this year, which you’ve probably guessed from my previous recipes. I’m like seriously anxiously waiting for the C day. Not sure why, it’s probably the hormones 😛 Anyway, tree is decorated and more cookies will be baked. All I needed is an awesome savory dish that would match the season. First think that came to my mind was mulled wine. I wasn’t sure if I could acually make it into a thick sauce, so I tried. And it was crazy good. It’s like a mulled wine jam.

Which gives me an idea. I should try it with peanut butter. Yeah, I’m gonna try that, you should, too 😀 And tell me if you love it!

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

So, let’s get into details. By now you know mulled wine sauce is the most important ingredient of this Christmas cheeseburger. But it wouldn’t be a cheeseburger without some cheese!! 

I’m using matured cheddar to contrast the sweet sauce. It has just the right saltiness and spiciness to go perfectly with mulled wine. Plus, who doesn’t love cheddar. When I was cutting the slices, I ate one and left one for the burger… my husband is probably wondering, where all the cheddar went 🙂

And of course, we shouldn’t forget the ORANGE. This cheeseburger is simply not so awesome without it, so don’t leave it out. Seriously! Besides the amazing Christmasy flavor it also gives some freshness and juice. Yum!

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

Ok, final thing, then I’m leaving you all alone with the recipe. Which is very simple, I might add.

The buns! For the first time in my life I made pretzel buns. Crazy! I make my own bread all the time, but never really went for pretzels. I found a very easy recipe for pretzel buns by Eat in my kitchen and I love it. Really simple and incredibly tender, so if you feel confident enough to make your own buns, I strongly recommend you to try them.

All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?
All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast?

I know your dying to try the Christmas burgers with mulled wine sauce, so go for it!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

MULLED WINE CHRISTMAS CHEESEBURGER

Course Main Course
Keyword beef burger, festive burger
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

MULLED WINE SAUCE

  • 1 1/2 cup dry or semidry red wine
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup dried sultanas
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 9 cloves
  • 1/2 medium-hot chilli deseeded
  • orange zest of one orange

CHRISTMAS CHEESEBURGER

  • 500 g minced beef
  • 4 pretzel or burger buns
  • 1 big orange sliced to 5mm slices, peel removed
  • 120 g matured cheddar thinly sliced
  • big bunch of arugula
  • salt
  • pepper

Instructions

Mulled Wine Sauce

  1. Put all ingredients for mulled wine sauce in a small saucepan. Bring it to a boil, then reduce heat and let it simmer for 30 minutes.

  2. Use an immerse blender or a regular blender to thicken the sauce. You don't need to make it completely smooth.

Christmas Cheeseburger

  1. Divide minced beef into 4 and make patties that are slightly larger than the bun.

  2. Heat a pan and add a tablespoon of oil. Fry the patties for about 4 minutes on one side. Turn around, season with salt and pepper and cover with slices of cheddar. Cook for another 4 minutes for a medium burger or for 5-6 minutes for a well done. Cover with lid if the cheese needs some help with melting.

Assembly

  1. Cut the buns in half, spread the mulled wine sauce on the bottom part, add the burger patty, top with arugula and slices of oranges. Cover the burgers and enjoy!

Use Yor Noodles - Mulled Wine Christmas Cheeseburger
All the amazing tastes of Christmas in one mulled wine Christmas cheeseburger. Who says Christmas should be celebrated with a roast? Click to find the whole recipe or pin and save for later!

Bacon Wrapped Prunes With Herbed Feta Dip

Indulgent finger food  for the best party you’ll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

Indulgent finger food for the best party you'll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

Yay, finally sharing this recipe with you!

I’ve been making it for a while now, but never got around photographing and posting it. But with the holiday season slowly arriving, I felt like, I owe you this recipe, because – yes, I’m gonna say it – it’s amazing. It’s dried fruit wrapped in bacon. Who wouldn’t love that?! 🙂

Indulgent finger food for the best party you'll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

There’s a little story about how I got to this deliciousness. It happened on our honeymoon a little over two years ago.  I know many people decide to go to some perfect tropical beach for their honeymoon, but we decided to make a road trip through Europe. We made over 2500 km in 16 days and saw soooo many things and sights. One of them was the lovely town of Kaunas in Lithuania. It gave out the vibe of still being stuck in the old time with all the old communist monuments and decaying facades, but that actually gave the town a really special character. 

Anyway, convinced that the nightlife would be pretty much non existant we headed to the center of town. Well, we were dead wrong. It was vibrant and lively with all the people siting in the restaurants and pubs, drinking, eating and having a blast. Looked so fun that we had to join. For the first time ever we tried mulled beer. Delicious, btw! We also tried some finger food. Among other we had tiny packets of prunes wrapped in bacon that were filled with some kind of nuts. That was such a clever and incredibly delicious appetizer! Soft and chewy, but crispy on the outside and in the middle. Clever, I’m saying. I’ve been making my own version ever since.

Indulgent finger food for the best party you'll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

I’m in love with this presentation, with the tree springs, holding together the bacon wrapped prunes. There’s another story behind that. 

I usually spend New Year’s Eve with friends in a cabin somewhere in the wild (sometimes not so wild). One year we decided to throw a fancy dress-yo’self-very-pretty kind of New Year’s Eve party. These pretty bacon wrapped prunes were a must! Of course, we were not at home and we didn’t have toothpicks that would hold the whole thing together so we headed to the garden and cut some tree springs and solved the problem. Easy 😀 They looked so much better than with good old toothpicks. Don’t you think they look festive?

In case you are like me – always in need of some dip, here’s a recipe for a simple feta dip with fresh herbs. I used parsley and chives, because that’s what still growing in the garden, but you can add whatever you’ve got on hand. 

Indulgent finger food for the best party you'll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Go ahead, try them out on the side of some mulled mandarin juice! I sure will 🙂

BACON WRAPPED PRUNES WITH HERBED FETA DIP

Course Appetizer
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 30

Ingredients

BACON WRAPPED PRUNES

  • 30 prunes pitted
  • 15 thin bacon slices
  • 25 g almonds chopped finely
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp ground sweet red pepper

HERBED FETA DIP

  • 100 g Feta Cheese
  • 60 g Greek-style yogurt
  • a bunch of herbs I used parsley and chives, chopped
  • pinch of pepper

Instructions

BACON WRAPPED PRUNES

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Heat a pan over medium-high heat, then add chopped almonds. Roast for a minute, until they start smelling sweet. Remove from heat and add olive oil and ground sweet red pepper. Toss around to coat the nuts and set aside too cool a little.
  3. Cut bacon in half.
  4. Fill the prunes with nuts and wrap them in bacon, securing ends with toothpicks.
  5. Place them onto a baking paper-lined baking tray and bake for 12-15 minutes or until the bacon gets golden and crispy.
  6. Best served hot.

HERBED FETA DIP

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor, to get a smooth dip. Keep in the fridge before serving.
Indulgent finger food for the best party you'll ever throw, but not without these crispy bacon wrapped prunes and a decadent herbed feta dip!

Elderflower Cookie Bites With Raspberries

These cute elderflower cookie bites are what elderflower season is all about. Flowers and girliness!

Use Your Noodles - Elderflower Cookie Bites With Raspberries

It’s finally here!

Elderflower season.

I probably can’t express how anxiously I’m waiting for it every year. Elderflower is my definite favorite spring thing, apart from the sun 🙂 Why? Firstly, it smells heavenly. Second, the possiblities to use it are endless. Thirdly, it’s so girly. 

These cute elderflower cookie bites are what elderflower season is all about. Flowers and girliness!
These cute elderflower cookie bites are what elderflower season is all about. Flowers and girliness!

First of all, I need to tell you a crazy story…

The last time I posted here, was the day of my brother’s birthday picnic party. Before it even began, me and my husband went to the picnic place and started throwing frisbee. After the second throw I tripped and fractured a bone in my foot. How lame! And to make matters worse, our dance show premiered the next day. So instead of partying, I spend three hours at the emergency and instead of doing the whole show the next day, I danced with cruches in only a few parts. 

Lesson learned. I’m never playing any sport the day before the show ever again! I promise!

Use Your Noodles - Elderflower Cookie Bites With Raspberries

Anyway, a fractured bone can’t stop me to go picking elderflower.

Check out the proof on my Instagram

Use Your Noodles - Elderflower Cookie Bites With Raspberries

These cute elderflower cookie bites are made of three layers:

  • buttery cookie with elderflowers
  • white chocolate cream with rose water
  • freeze-dried raspberries.

The recipe is insanely easy. The cookies are done in 25 minutes from start to finish. All it takes is to decorate them and they are ready to be served 🙂 And even if you don’t feel like putting anyhing on, they are delicious also without the cream and raspberries. 

If you do decorate them, make sure to make a deep enough hole before baking, because they will expand in the oven and the hole will be shallower after they are baked.

These cute elderflower cookie bites are what elderflower season is all about. Flowers and girliness!

Tag #useyournoodles so I can see your beautiful UYN creations. Also, stay in touch on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to get the recipes directly to your mailbox ♥

Now, let’s go bake some elderflower cookie bites!

ELDERFLOWER COOKIE BITES WITH RASPBERRIES

Course Dessert
Keyword cookies, thumb cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 32 cookies

Ingredients

COOKIE BASE

  • 8 eldeflower heads thick stalks removed (use 8 TBSP dried elderflower if not in season)
  • 160 g all purpose flour
  • 50 g unrefined cane sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla seeds
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 80 g cold butter cubed
  • 4-5 TBSP milk

CHOCOLATE CREAM

  • 50 g white chocolate
  • 2 TBSP whipping cream
  • 1 tsp rose water

TOPPING

  • 32 freeze-dried raspberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Cookie base

  1. Chop elderflower heads and add them to a food processor. Add flour, sugar, vanilla seeds, and baking soda. Pulse a couple of times to get an even mixture.

  2. Add butter and pulse until you get a dry cookie mixture.
  3. Add milk and mix well, until a ball of dough starts to form. Scrape the sides if necessary.
  4. Divide the dough in half, half it again, and so on, until you get 32 identical pieces. Form balls with your palms and make a deep hole in the center with your finger.
  5. Place on a baking paper-lined baking tray and bake for 15 minutes or until light golden color. Move them to a wire rack and leave to cool down for at least 10 minutes.

Chocolate cream

  1. While the cookies are baking put whipping cream and white chocolate in a small bowl and place it over a small saucepan of simmering water. Stir occasionally, until the cream and the chocolate form a smooth cream.

  2. Remove from heat and add rose water. Mix well and place in the fridge to cool for 10 minutes, then bring to room temperature.

Decorating

  1. Using a teaspoon or a piping bag, place about 1/2 tsp of cream into the hole in each cookie and top with freeze-dried raspberries.

Notes

Make sure you make deep holes in the cookies before baking, because the cookies will expand and the holes will get shallower.

Also try these delicious spring desserts:

Spring Strawberry Layer Cake in a Glass

Peach And Celery Ice Lollies

Use Your Noodles - Elderflower Cookie Bites With Raspberries