Mina de Espinaka (Matzoh, Spinach & Cheese Pie)

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Post Thu, Jan 14 2021, 11:06 am
I've been going through my files in anticipation of Pesach. I had forgotten about this one which I made a few years ago and was a hit.

Mina de Espinaka (Matzoh, Spinach & Cheese Pie)

Excerpt From: Judy Bart Kancigor - The Perfect Passover Cookbook

Mina is a Sephardic layered savory pie. Ketty created a mina for Passover, layering a spinach and cheese filling between sheets of softened matzoh crowned with Cheddar cheese. This dish is lovely for a dairy lunch or brunch during the holiday week.

Serves 8    Dairy

Vegetable cooking spray, for greasing the baking pan
5 boards matzoh
1 recipe spinach and cheese mixture (follows), uncooked
1 large egg, beaten
¾ cup grated Cheddar cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 13 × 9-inch baking pan.

2. Soak the matzoh boards in cool water until it is flexible and thoroughly saturated, but not falling apart. If you can lift it easily, it’s not soaked enough. Drain it on dish towels, covering the matzoh with more towels and squeezing gently to eliminate the moisture. Carefully transfer the moistened matzoh to the prepared baking pan, tearing it as necessary to line the bottom in a single layer. (The edges can overlap slightly.) Reserve the remaining matzoh.

3. Pour the spinach mixture over the matzoh, and top with another layer of soaked matzoh, overlapping the torn edges slightly (the matzoh will shrink somewhat during baking).

4. Brush the top generously with the beaten egg, sprinkle with the grated cheese, and bake on the center oven rack until the pie is set and golden, about 35 minutes. Cover the pan and allow the pie to rest for a few minutes. Then cut it into squares, and serve.

Spinach and Cheese Mixture

Solid vegetable shortening or vegetable cooking spray
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, chopped
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
10 large eggs
½ cup ricotta cheese
1 bag (6 ounces) prewashed fresh baby spinach, or 1 box (10 ounces) frozen leaf spinach, thawed
3 cups grated cheese (see Note)
1 teaspoon kosher (coarse) salt, or to taste
¼ teaspoon pepper, preferably white, or to taste

1. Heat the oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 10 minutes. Then add the mushrooms, raise the heat to medium-high, and cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms are tender and have exuded their moisture, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

2. Mix the eggs with the ricotta in a large bowl. (This is accomplished more easily if you add the first 3 or 4 eggs one at a time.)

3. If you are using fresh spinach (and I highly recommend you do), coarsely chop it. If using frozen, drain it very well and coarsely chop it.

4. Add the onion-mushroom mixture, grated cheese, spinach, and salt and pepper to the egg mixture. Mix well.

NOTE: Ketty uses a mixture of kasseri, sharp Cheddar, Parmesan, and feta.
—from Ketty Moreno”
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