These little individual cheese triangles (tiropitakia) are the quintessential Greek snack food. They’re very popular in Greek cuisine and come in a variety of shapes such as individual rolls, half-moons, little croissants or triangles. The saltiness of the Greek cheeses pairs so nicely with phyllo dough. In Greece they’re popular for a late breakfast, I’ll eat them whenever I want!!
PHYLLO DOUGH PASTRY
- 1/4 cup Water
- 1 cup Flour (250g)
- 4 tbsp Olive oil
- 1/4 tsp Salt (mespunt)
PASTRY CHEESE TRIANGLES (TIROPITAKIA)
- 375 g Feta cheese, crumbled
- 185 g Ricotta cheese
- 1.5 tbsp Fresh chopped parsely
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 3/4 tsp Dried dill
- 1/2 tsp Black pepper
- 2 Eggs, beaten
- 250g Unsalted butter
TO MAKE THE PHYLLO DOUGH PASTRY
- Sift the flour with the salt.
- Make a well in the middle of the flour.
- In the well put the water and the olive oil.
- Work the dough until it hangs well together.
- Dust flour on a table or board.
- Knead the dough for about 5-7 minutes.
- The dough should be smooth and not stick to the board.
- Roll the dough out to a big rectangle.
- Lay a damp towel over it and let it rest for about 15 minutes.
- Flour your hands and work the dough from the middle outwards until you have the dough stretched to about 3 ft by 3 ft (1meter x 1meter) If work table is not big enough to roll out a 3 ft. by 3 ft. dough, divide the dough into 9 (divide into 3, then divide each third into 3 more) and roll out each portion into 1 ft. by 1 ft. sheet. Cut the dough with a sharp knife or pizza cutter to the desired sheet size.
- Continue with the recipe that requires the phyllo dough.
Preserving your phyllo dough so it doesn't dry out is very important. A long piece of wax paper is just as good (actually better, because the dough doesn't get soggy). You place a long piece of wax paper over the dough strips or whatever length you need. If you're not going to work with your dough right away, place the piece(s) of wax paper over your dough. Wet a couple of pieces of paper towel, wring out excess moisture. Place over the wax paper. This will ensure your dough will not dry out.
TO MAKE THE FILLING
- Preheat your oven to 375F.
- In a small bowl, add your cheeses, your herbs, spices and beaten eggs. Mix thoroughly, set aside.
- On a clean flat surface, bring out your phyllo dough. Open it flat.
- Melt your butter using a microwave or stove top, and usually do 1/2 c at a time. Take 2-3 strips of phyllo dough, baste with melted butter. Add 1tbls or so of filling.
- Start with the right top corner bring your phyllo dough over the filling making a triangle. Flatten slightly to ensure all the pastry will have filling in it.
- Take the top left pointy corner of your filled pastry, and bring it down on the left hand side.
- Working again with the left pointy part, bring your triangle over to the right.
- Working now with the right top pointy part, bring it down straight on the right.
- Continue doing this till you reach the end of the dough. At this point, just cut off the excess piece.
- Place on a plate till ready to use.
- When you are ready to bake, line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil (easier clean up), spray with non stick cooking spray, baste the tiropitakia with melted butter. Bake in a preheated 375F oven for 18-22 minutes, till nicely golden.