These Keftedes apo apanaki (Greek spinach fritters) are flavored with dill and sharp, hard cheese. If you can’t find Greek kefalotyri cheese, Parmesan is a great substitute. Serve hot with a few generous spoonfuls of homemade tzatziki sauce.
The tzatziki sauce recipe yields 2 ½ cups. It is excellent served as a topping for rice or vegetables, or as a side dish on its own with other Greek or Mediterranean salads and spreads with bread.
Join Jennifer Abadi on Wednesday, June 16 at 7:30 pm ET for a cooking class to learn how to make this dish as part of our three-week-long Sephardi cooking series.
For the fritters:
- 10 ounces baby spinach leaves, rinsed well and drained
- 3 medium white onions, finely chopped (about 2 ½ cups)
- 1 cup + 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup finely chopped dill leaves
- ¼ cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley
- 8 large eggs
- 1 ¼ cups white flour
- 3 cups coarsely grated Greek kefalotyri cheese or other sharp, hard cheese such as Parmesan
- 1 tsp salt
- freshly grated black pepper
For the tzatziki sauce:
- 2 cups Greek-style whole milk yogurt (or combination of 1 cup whole milk yogurt plus 1 cup of leban, a strained, thickened Middle Eastern style of yogurt)
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 2 tsp very finely chopped or crushed garlic
- 2 Tbsp very finely chopped fresh dill
- pinch freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil + extra, to serve
- 1 Kirby cucumber, peeled, coarsely grated, and drained of excess water
- Start by making the tzatziki sauce. Combine all ingredients in small mixing bowl. Allow to sit in refrigerator for one hour for flavors to set in. Serve chilled or at room temperature, drizzled with olive oil.
- Then make the fritters. Cover the spinach in water and gently boil until very soft, about 5 minutes. Squeeze dry and set aside.
- In a medium size frying pan or skillet, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until soft and transparent, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat to cool.
- In a large bowl, combine chopped dill and parsley, eggs, flour, grated cheese, salt and pepper.
- Add the cooked onions and the drained spinach to the bowl and mix well.
- In a clean, large skillet, heat ¼ cup olive oil over medium-high heat for 1 minute.
- Prepare a large platter with a layer of paper towels and place it on a counter or tabletop beside the skillet. Scoop out one rounded tablespoon of the mixture and place into the skillet of hot oil. Fry until golden brown, then flip over to cook opposite side (about 1-1½ minutes on each side). Place the fritter onto the dish with the paper towels in order to absorb excess oil.
- Frying several simultaneously, continue to fry (leaving about 2 inches of space between each fritter) until all of the mixture has been used up.
- Serve hot topped with a few tablespoons of plain thick Greek yogurt.