Spinach Fatayer

Off late I have been cooking a lot of Middle eastern food. All from Sally Butcher's book The New Middle Eastern Vegetarian, the: Modern Recipes from Veggiestan. I borrowed it from the library a month ago and have been meaning to tell you about it but didn't know where to start. The book is divided into ten broad sections. bread, salads, soup, rice, vegetables, pickles and so on.. and i have been religiously cooking my way through them throughout the month. while the rice dishes and the street food sections are our favorites, we also fell for this stuffed bread last night. Spinach Fatayer. 

In the book Butcher credits the recipe to Mrs Haddad who is her Lebanese bread supplier. Apparently it is Mrs Haddad's family recipe. While the original recipe with sumac and pomegranate paste must be brilliant, I had to make do with substitutes like capers and chana masala in my version. Nevertheless we loved it. It made a happy meal along with a bowl of Mediterranean Chickpea Salad and yogurt seasoned with mustard and green chillies. Think Mr MN liked them much for he even took some for lunch today. I suppose the little one also liked them for he kept juggling between his kichudi and the Fatayer throughout dinner last night.

  • for the dough
    • 1 1/8 tsp bread machine yeast
    • 1/2 tsp sugar
    • 2/3 cups warm water
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2/3 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 3 tbsp, olive oil
    • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • for the filling
    • 10 oz spinach(i used frozen)
    • oil for frying
    • 1 medium onion chopped
    • 1/4 cup pine nuts, chopped
    • 1 tbsp capers, chopped
    • 1 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1 1/2 tsp chana masala
    • salt and pepper to taste
  • for glazing
    • 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
    • salt to taste
  what i did
  • for the dough,
    • i stirred in the yeast and sugar in 1/3 cup of warm water and set it aside for 10 minutes.
    • once the yeast solution became foamy, i sifted the flours and salt into a big bowl, added the yeast solution and 1 tbsp of oil to it and tried kneading with my hand.
    • at this point the flour mixture flour mixture felt very dry. so i added the remaining water and oil to the bread machine pan along with the flour mixture and set the machine on dough cycle. 
    • 15 minutes later, when the dough looked smooth and felt soft, i switched off the bread machine and turned the dough into a lightly oiled bowl. then covering the dough with a plastic cling wrap i put the bowl in a warm corner of the kitchen and let it double itself.
    • it took the dough about an hour and quarter to double. in the meantime, i made the filling.
  • for the filling,
    • i heated the oil in a saucepan and added the onions to it.
    • once the onions softened, i added the spinach (thawed and drained), capers and the nuts to the pan and cooked for about 4-5 minutes.
    • i then added the chana masala and lemon juice to the spinach, seasoned it to taste and let it cook for a few minutes more till the spinach was well cooked.  switching off the heat, i then set it aside.
  • once the dough doubled, i preheated the oven to 375 degrees F, lined 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and working with little portions of it at a time, i rolled it into a 1/8 inch thick ovals. the dough was soft. so to ease the rolling process i dabbed it with enough flour before rolling.
  • then using an upturned glass i cut out 7 cm circles off the dough, placed 1 tbsp of the filling in each of them and folded the sides to meet in the center like a pyramid pastry. then placing the pyramids in the lined baking trays i baked my first batch of small Fatayers for 22-25 minutes, until they were lightly browned.
  • the Fatayers did not grow too much in size after baking, so using a upturned bowl, i cut out 10 cm circles out of the remaining dough, placed 2-3 tbsp of the filling in each of them,  then folding them as before and glazed them with the solution of lemon juice-oil and salt and baked them for 28-30 minutes, until they were lightly golden.
  • then transferring the Fatayers to a bread basket, i covered them with a cloth and left it that way till dinner time.

Though this recipe was fairly simple to work through, I kept longing for the ladies in the house while i was stuffing the dough. because, somehow even a tedious task as stuffing  the dough becomes fun when you do it midst your sisters and friends..

I am sharing the Fatayers with Bread Baking Day #61. Bread Baking Day is a monthly event created by Zorra of 1x umr├╝hren bitte aka kochtopf and Anusha of Tomato Blues is hosting it this month and she has chosen Stuffed Breads. as the theme for the month. 

Also Yeastspotting this and sharing it at the following weekly food events

These nibbles were featured in...

Recipe Sharing Monday #57 

Hearth and Soul Blog Hop 160: 7/15/2013  

Made with Love Mondays Marvelous Mondays @ This Gal CooksMeatless Monday @Veggie Mama's Meatless Monday My Sweet and SavoryJust Another Meatless Monday @ Hey What's for Dinner Mom, Melt in your Mouth Mondays, Mop It Up Monday, Mealtime Monday, Recipe Sharing Monday, Inspire Me Monday, Clever Chicks Blog Hop, Maniac Monday Linky Party
Tuesday Food:  Tempt my Tummy @Blessed with GraceTotally Tasty Tuesday @ Mandy's Recipe BoxTasteful Tuesday Party @ Nap Time Creations,  Show Me What You Got @ Our Delightful Home,  Hand Made Tuesday @ Ladybug BlessingsShare it Link Party @ Winthrop ChroniclesHearth and Soul Blog Hop 
Wednesday Food : What's Cooking Wednesday @ Confessions of Overworked MomCast Party Wednesday @ Lady Behind the Curtain  Wednesday Whatsit @White Lights on Show and Share @ Semi Homemade MomWonderful Food Wednesdays at @ Home Take 2Seasonal Celebration @ Natural Mother's Network
Thursday Food:Link it Up Thursday @ Seven AliveCreative Thursday @ Michelle's Tasty CreationsFantastic Thursday @ Three Little ChiefsThriving on Thursdays @ DomesblissityFreedom Friday @ My TurnFull Plate Thursday @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage  
Friday Food: Foodie Friday @ Home Maid SimpleFriday Favorite (DYI too) @ Simple Sweet HomeFoodie Friday @ Not Your Ordinary Recipes Foodie Friday @ Rattlebridge Farm Weekend Wonders @ The Thriftiness MissFriday Food Frenzy @ Mostly Food and Crafts , Weekend Potluck @ Sunflower Supper Club The Weekend re-Treat @The Best Blog  Recipes


  1. They look gorgeous Tanu. But when are your baked goodies not so! And yes, working in the kitchen is more fun when the ladies are around :)

  2. The fatayers look so much like original... a gr8 snack...

  3. This looks great.We get so easily here but I think Home made is always good. THis is on my top list to prepare someday.

  4. Something new to me.. Looks like a Middle easternt version of the samosas.. Very inviting !!

  5. These fatayer are new to me as well, but I love the sound and look of them. The use of capers and pine nuts with the chana masala is particularly interesting. These would be beautiful for a party!

  6. Really interesting and delicious looking. Thank you so much for sharing these with us on foodie friday.

  7. Oh, yum! My family makes spinach pies (spinach calzones, basically). I love the flavors in your filling: capers, lemon, masala...yummy! Stopping by from Wonderful Food Wednesday - have a great day!
    Kim @ *Soliloquy Of Food & Such*

  8. This looks absolutely delicious!! Your photo is beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing this at Wonderful Food Wednesday!! Pinned & sharing on FB! :)

  9. What a great appetizer, can't wait to try this recipe. Hope you are having a great summer weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  10. Delicious appetizer Tanu, I love it, sure going to try it soon. thanks for sharing with Hearth and Soul blog hop.

  11. Woot! You have been featured this week at Recipe Sharing Monday! The new link party is up and I'd love to see you back. Have a great week. :)

  12. I would love for you to share and link up at my weekly TGIF Link Party if you haven't already this week. Your favorite posts, most popular, recent or new! The party is open every Thursday night and closes Wednesday's at midnight. Followed by (Not SO) Wordless Wednesday! http://apeekintomyparadise.blogspot.com/.

    I would be honored if you join us and follow to stay connected Have a wonderful week!

    Hugs, Cathy


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Take care and come back soon.
Best, Tanusree

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