The old adage says you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, and in most cases that’s super sage advice. I can think of some great books I’ve read that would have been labeled absolute duds if left to rely on their dusty old jackets. When it comes to food, however, the same isn’t entirely true. Sure, sometimes a mishmash of ingredients unattractively blended can taste pretty amazing (a mixed-up taco salad still reigns in my heart as one of the greatest foods of all time), but as eaters we tend to judge from the outside in. Only when a dish is pretty on the outside and delicious on the inside do we know for certain that we have a slam dunk.
Because Pinterest is now the supreme online outlet for eye candy, it seems a fitting source for a recipe on the subject. My mom actually pinned this a while back (yes, everybody and their mother are on Pinterest now. Huzzah!), and I repined it before even reading the recipe. It looked that good. No, that isn’t an advisable means to selecting what to make for dinner, but sometimes you’ve just got to trust what you see. And as it turns out, my eyes were a couple of big green smarty pants that day because this spinach and feta strudel, adapted from Veggie Mama, is a definite winner.
I made quite a few changes to the original recipe, largely to use up some ingredients that were nearing the end of their agreed-upon residency in my refrigerator. It’s super flexible that way; throw in whatever cheese or veggies you have on hand, and it will probably turn out just as great. As Nat King Cole would say, I think it’s a dandy.
Spinach, Feta, Tomato and Olive Strudel
Adapted from Veggie Mama
• 6 ounces fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
• 1 cup feta, crumbled
• 6 to 10 cherry tomatoes, quartered
• ¼ cup Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
• 1/2 cup Swiss cheese, shredded
• 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
• 1/8 to ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together spinach, feta, tomatoes, olives and Swiss cheese.
Place puff pastry sheet on a large baking sheet (I put mine on a Silpat, too, to avoid stickage), and spoon the spinach mixture onto the middle of the pastry. Leave a narrow gap of pastry on the sides and a larger gap on the top and bottom.
Fold the sides of the pastry in. Then fold over the top and bottom.
Turn the pastry upside down on the baking sheet, then brush the top with the melted butter. Sprinkle with Parmesan, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until cheese is all melty and delicious and the pastry turns golden brown.
Have you found any gems on Pinterest lately? Food, décor or otherwise? How about just pretty pretty foods that you’re cooking up at your place? What’s the dish, pals?