My grandmother passed away last week at the age of 88. She was known for many things, but, perhaps most of all, she was known for her incredible cooking skills. A child of Greek immigrants, my Yiayia was the kind of cook who could turn a simple salad or pasta into a masterpiece.
She was also known for her kind and generous spirit. And, with that in mind, I thought I’d share one of her most beloved recipes, for an out-of-this-world cheese appetizer. Nothing I make tastes as much like my grandmother’s original as these do, and nothing I make is quite as delicious.
Think of tiropitas as spanakopita without the spinach — that is, quite literally, what they are. I looked forward to tiropitas every holiday, and I bet you will, too. And Sunday night dinner, and mid afternoon snack. They require some labor, but they do freeze well and, trust me, they’re 100% worth it.
- 1/2 Pound feta cheese
- 1/2 Pound ricotta cheese
- 3 Eggs
- 1-2 Dashes Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 Pound butter, melted
- 1 Pound phyllo dough
1. In a large bowl, combine feta and ricotta. Add in one egg at a time and continue to combine. Stir in a dash or two of worcestershire sauce. Cheese mixture should still be slightly lumpy.
2. Using scissors or a sharp knife, cut one sheet of phyllo dough at a time into 2 inch strips. Line up each strip and, using a pastry brush, brush on some melted butter. Put about 1 tablespoon of the cheese mixture on each strip. Fold the corner of the phyllo over the cheese mixture, into the shape of a triangle. Continue folding over, like you would fold a flag, until you’ve reached the end of the strip. Repeat with remaining strips. Don’t worry about them looking a little sloppy — it takes a while to get the hang of folding them, and they’re tasty no matter what!
3. Brush completed triangles with melted butter. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until triangles are golden brown.