Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Greek Meat Pie - Kreatopita

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This is the ultimate comfort food, trust me!  You won't be able to stop eating it, oh wait, "that's me"!  In all seriousness though, you won't be able to stop eating it!  I'm almost 100% sure it's the crispy flakiness of the homemade pastry dough that brings this dish to the ultimate level!! It is chock full of ground beef, rice, seasonings, including one you will be surprised to see listed, yet that spice is what makes this dish out of this world.



There are many versions of this dish throughout Greece of course. Every family has their own version, every region, adding just a smidgen of this, or a smidgen of that.  Never-the-less, it is a very popular Greek dish, and now my friends, you can enjoy it too! ♥


Truth be told, my family prefers this pita as their #1 choice, followed by the "tiropita" or cheese pie as #2.  Pumpkin pie is their #3 choice, and lastly, the famous spanakopita...
I know, who would of thunk right?


Now you all know my fetish with stuffed things right?  I know, I have a serious problem.  *Didi hanging head in shame*  But it is what it is...
So instead of making the "traditional" pita which is crust on the bottom and crust on top with the filling in the middle, and because I am a true and honest crust fanatic, I made my pita in logs.  This way you have your own piece of stuffed decadence!


Ready for this very simple recipe?  Here we go;

Yield: 4 logs - 16 pieces
Prep time: 20 minutes (not including dough, linked below)
Cook time: 50-60 minutes

**You can certainly use your a bread dough for this, just make sure it is rolled out very thin**

Prep and ingredients with step by step for homemade phyllo dough: HERE


Ingredients:
1/2 lb ground beef
1 small onion, diced fine
3/4 cup uncooked long grain rice
1/2-3/4 tsp cinnamon *magic ingredient*
2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped or 1-1/4 tsp dried basil
1 tbsp tomato paste
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1-3/4 cups water

Directions: 
-Place ground beef in your favorite skillet with cover and brown, drain any excess fat.

-Add your diced onion, and saute till just starting to become soft and aromatic.

-Let's add in our rice, stir till the rice is thoroughly mixed in and add in the tomato paste.  Stir again till thoroughly incorporated.

-Now we add in those amazing aromatic spices, stir and just; "INHALE".  "Oh wait, that is me again"!  Pour in your water, bring to simmer, cover, turn off heat and let sit for approximately 15 minutes.  Fluff the rice, taste for seasonings, adjust if necessary.  Our filling needs to cool and we are ready to roll.  Pun intended!

-Our dough should be ready for us.  Follow the instructions in the link above.  

-When your dough is to your suiting regarding thinness, let's make that circle into a rectangle shall we.  How?  "Never fear, Didi's here"!

-Preheat oven to 350F. Dive your dough into 4 equal pieces.

-Facing your round circle dough, take the farthest piece away from you and bring almost to the middle.  Bring the closest piece to you towards the middle also, overlapping. That is your filling base.  Let's make those ends nice too shall we? Bring the end to your left over, about 2 inches or so and straighten it.  Now do the same for your right end.  See, we have a rectangle? A nice square surface to work with.  I would never steer you wrong! 

-Add a good amount of filling in a straight line about 1/2 inch from the end closest to you.  You want a good amount of filling, about 1/2 cup, maybe a little less, and add it from end to end.  

-Roll from the edge closest to you up and over the filling, pinch the ends, or as my kids call it; "pinch the butt".  Continue rolling and pinching, it takes about 3 to 4 rolls.  You have formed your LOG!  I am so very proud of you! ♥

-Place the log on an oil covered baking pan and continue with the rest of the 3 dough balls and filling.  




-Baste each log with olive oil.  Taking a sharp knife and using your judgement for proximity, lightly score each log into four equal parts. You don't want to go all the way thru, this is just for easier cutting after they come out of the oven.  Bake for approximately 55-60 minutes or till logs are nicely golden.  

-Let rest for about 10 minutes for easier handling, cut and enjoy!!  
Unless you can't control yourself, which I totally understand, trust me.  Hence the cut off piece... I know!








Get ready for compliments and totally empty platters my friends! Oh yes, the best feeling in the world!!

Till next time!

Dishin with Didi

10 comments :

  1. Didi, your meat pies sound absolutely delicious. They must be impossible to stop eating. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are my friend Karen, they are absolutely addicting!! If you make them, or fill them with whatever fillings you want, please let me know!! ♥

      Delete
  2. Alex, they are so super easy, and you being the "baker" that I am not... I know you can make these and they will make a perfect lunch for you and TBG!! ♥

    ReplyDelete
  3. Didi,
    Have you ever made them in muffin tins? The recipe I have not tried yet has the pastry fit into muffin tins, then the filling. The top is sprinkled with grated Parmesan. I have trouble handling phyllo dough and wonder which would be easier.
    If you ever try that, please post your thoughts.
    M

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi M! I have not tried the muffin tin one. The recipe I have linked for the dough is so easy my friend, even I can do it. And trust me, I am dough challenged. If you make the tin ones please come back and let me know. I love to experiment!

      Delete
  4. Probably is a silly question but does the rice go in cooked ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No question is silly. I should of specified uncooked, thank you for bringing that to my attention.

      Here are the instructions from the post;

      "Let's add in our rice, stir till the rice is thoroughly mixed in and add in the tomato paste. Stir again till thoroughly incorporated.

      -Now we add in those amazing aromatic spices, stir and just; "INHALE". "Oh wait, that is me again"! Pour in your water, bring to simmer, cover, turn off heat and let sit for approximately 15 minutes. Fluff the rice, taste for seasonings, adjust if necessary. Our filling needs to cool and we are ready to roll. Pun intended!"

      Delete
  5. is this uncooked minute rice or like uncle ben's rice?


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Anonymous,
      It is like uncle Ben's.

      Delete