If you would like to make something different for Thanksgiving, you should try this Greek Kolokythopita (Pumpkin or Butternut Squash Pie). It may be different from what you are used to but it’s so delicious you will love it. Pumpkin is not as easy to find in Greece as butternut squash, so you can use whichever you prefer.
As I said in a previous post, my neighbour gave me two butternut squashes, one of which I made the Savoury Cornmeal Crumble with Butternut Squash, Spinach and Feta, as well as the Butternut Squash Chocolate Chip Muffins with Chocolate Carob Syrup Buttercream Frosting.
When we returned back from Athens, the other one was not quite ripe. When my neighbour came to visit I asked her how many days it takes for it to ripen so without a second word she fetched a ripe one and took the other one to feed it to her chickens.
I decided to make this Kolokythopita, which is my twist to the classic Greek Pie with homemade phyllo and a delicious pumpkin filling with pumpkin spices as well as almonds and raisins, which I love in Cypriot Kolokotes (Pumpkin turnovers). In the Cypriot ones we add rice or bulgar to absorb the juices while baking. Instead of adding rice, I added ground biscuits which added an additional lovely taste to the filling. To make the phyllo I did not have enough all purpose flour so I added some whole meal flour as well but you can make it with with 600 grams all purpose flour only.
Before adding the filling, if you see that there are too many fluids, just empty it quickly in a colander without leaving it to drain.
I am still trying to learn how to use my new oven. At the moment I am experimenting baking with the fan forced option. Although I read somewhere that you don’t need to pre-heat fan forced ovens, I don’t know if this is true but I still preheat mine and I bake at a lower temperature.
Sweet Kolokythopita, recipe by Ivy
For the dough:
Makes: 4 phyllos
- 500 grams all purpose flour
- 100 grams wholemeal flour
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- Water as much as needed (about 1 cup)
For the filling:
- 3.5 kg butternut squash (net weight 1,800 grams)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup sultana raisins
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp mixed spices*
- 150 gr. (1 cup raw almonds with skins) coarsely ground
- 100 gr. petit beurre biscuits or digestive biscuits finely ground
- 3 tbsp honey
- A pinch of pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil
*Note: You can make your own mixed spices mixture by grinding an equal amount of cinnamon, cloves, allspice, nutmeg and ground ginger.
- Peel the butternut squash and grate on the large side or chop into smaller pieces.
- Add all ingredients and let them marinate until you finish with the phyllo.
- When ready to put the filling in the pie, strain to remove excess juices.
- Grease a baking tray 32 x 23 x 6 cm or 12.5x 9 x 2.5 inches.
- Prepare the dough. Cover with a kitchen towel and let it rest for about 30 minutes.
- See the process here step-by-step or watch me making phyllo using a rolling pin or watch me making phyllo using a pasta attachment.
- Divide the dough into 4 pieces, two of which should be slightly bigger.
- Flour the table with corn flour (starch) and roll the first two phyllo sheets which should cover the sides of your baking tin. Oil the first one and then add the second.
- Put the filling in the middle and spread it with a spoon to go anywhere.
- Roll out the third and fourth phyllo sheets exactly the size of the baking tray. Oil each sheet. To join the four sheets, gently fold, pressing them to join.
- Lightly score your phyllo the shape you like.
- Preheat oven to 170oC / 338o F fan forced.
- Put the rack at 1/3 of the oven and bake until the pie is golden on top, for about 1 hour, depending on your oven.
- Leave it to cool slightly so that filling sets and then serve.
Other Similar Recipes:
Whole Wheat Kolokythopita
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,