James Beard Award-winning Cookbook Author

Just the Recipe: Greek Greens Pie

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Greek Greens Pie

Make the pastry first.  You can make it a day or so ahead, if you wish.  And if you are strapped for time, feel free to use refrigerated pie crusts.  You can also blanch the greens a day ahead, squeeze out excess liquid, and refrigerate for a day or two.
Course Lunch
Servings 8 slices



  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cake flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 16 tablespoons cold unsalted butter 2 sticks, 8 ounces total
  • 6 tablespoons ice water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar


  • 1 bunch black kale (cavolo nero) or other kale
  • 1 bunch mustard greens
  • 1 bunch chard
  • 1 bunch spinach


  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus more if needed
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes optional
  • 1 large leek washed well, sliced thin
  • 1 cup sliced scallions
  • 3/4 cup grated Romano or Parmesan cheese about 2 ½ ounces
  • 1 cup crumbled Feta cheese 4 ounces
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • salt to taste
  • 1 large egg + 1 egg white lightly beaten
  • 1 large egg yolk + 1 teaspoon water, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream


Pastry in Food Processor

  • Measure both flours by spooning into dry measuring cups to overflowing and leveling off (10 ounces total by weight)
  • Put the flours and salt into the work bowl fitted with the metal blade.  Pulse a few times to combine.
  • Cut butter into ½-inch cubes and add to the work bowl. Pulse 4 times for 1 full second each.
  • Combine the ice water and cider vinegar in a 1-cup measure with pouring spout.
  • Start pulsing very rapidly (fractions of a second each) as you gradually add the liquid through the feed tube.  Pulse about 30 times until dough forms large clumps but does not actually gather into a ball.
  • Remove dough from processor and place on lightly floured surface.  Squeeze lumps together gently into 1 mass.

Pastry by Hand

  • Measure both flours by spooning into dry measuring cups to overflowing and leveling off (10 ounces total by weight)
  • Combine the flours and salt in a large bowl
  • Add butter and cut into the flour with a pastry blender until the texture of coarse crumbs.
  • Combine the ice water and cider vinegar in a 1-cup measure with pouring spout.
  • Slowly, while tossing with a fork, add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix until dough gathers into a ball.

Chill Pastry

  • Divide the dough in two, one piece slightly larger than the other, form each into a disk, enclose in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 2 days.

Prepare the Greens

  • Bring a large pot of unsalted water to the boil
  • Meanwhile, remove stems from the greens and wash greens well. Cut greens into largish pieces and keep each type separate to accommodate different cooking times
  • Add the kale to the pot, cover, and cook 2 minutes.
  • Add the chard, cover and cook 2 minutes.
  • Add the mustard greens and spinach, cover and cook 4 minutes.
  • Drain well and transfer greens to large bowl of cold water.  When cool, drain, and squeeze as much water as you can from the greens.  You should have 12 to 13 ounces of blanched greens.
  • Chop them finely with a large chef’s knife.
  • To cook, heat ¼ cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the red pepper flakes, if using, and the leek and scallions.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the chopped greens, and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes.  If vegetables seem dry and want to stick to the pan, add small amounts of water as needed.
  • Take the pan off the heat and cool completely.
  • Add the cheeses, dill, and parsley.  Taste carefully for salt and add if needed. 
  • Stir in the eggs and cream.

Assemble the Pie

  • Adjust an oven rack to the lowest position, set a heavy baking sheet on it, and preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  • Roll the larger piece of dough on a lightly floured surface to a 13-inch circle and fit into a 9-inch ovenproof glass pie plate. 
  • Trim excess pastry so it hangs over the edge of the pie plate by ½-inch.
  • Roll second piece of dough to a 12-inch circle. 
  • Fill pastry shell with the greens, packing it down gently.
  • Brush edge of pastry with ice water and cover with top crust.
  • Trim top to match the bottom crust and press to seal.  Fold edge to make a rounded rim, flatten slightly, and score with the back of a knife.  Or just leave the edge plain. 
  • Brush with the egg yolk and water, and make 4 slits in the top of pie.

Finishing the Pie

  • Bake 20 minutes at 450 degrees.  Reduce the temperature to 400 degrees and bake 40 to 50 minutes more, until crust is nicely browned and pie is cooked through.
  • Cool 10 to 15 minutes and cut into 8 wedges.  Accompany with a side salad.
Keyword Pie

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