Feta and Spinach Torta

From issue #8.
Photography by Vanessa Wu.
Feta and Spinach Torta

This is a delicious thin olive oil pastry typically found in Italy. It is easy to make by hand and the fillings can be varied depending what is in season.

Serves: 6-8


300 grams plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1⁄2 – 3⁄4 cup water

500 grams floury potatoes, e.g. Agria
2 tablespoons olive oil
100 grams bacon, thinly sliced
1 leek, finely sliced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
zest of 1 lemon
300 grams spinach, shredded
150 grams feta cheese
1⁄2 cup chopped herbs, e.g. mint, parsley, dill
1 egg
2 tablespoons cream
30cm pizza tin


Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Pastry: Place the flour, salt and olive oil in a bowl and add enough water to just bring the dough together. Tip onto the bench and knead until the dough is silky and elastic, about 3 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 2 hours. Divide the dough into 2 pieces and roll out very thinly on a lightly floured bench. Roll the pastry larger than the tin to allow for pleating together. Place one piece over the base of the tin. Keep the other covered with plastic wrap.

Filling: Peel and cut the potatoes into chunks. Cook in boiling salted water until tender. Drain then place back in the pot over a low heat to drive off excess moisture. Roughly mash with a fork and cool.
Heat the oil in a sauté pan and add the bacon, leek and the garlic. Cook until the leeks are soft then add the lemon zest and the raw spinach. Cook for another minute to wilt the spinach then season and set aside to cool.

Combine the potatoes, feta and the herbs in a large bowl. Add the cooled vegetables along with the egg and cream. Combine well then spread over the pastry base. Wet the edges of the pastry and place the second piece over the top. Pleat the edges together to seal. Cut a few small steam holes in the top. Brush generously with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.

Bake approximately 45 minutes until crisp and golden.
Brush with oil once more during cooking. Allow to sit for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 6-8