Hajj is a time of coming together for Muslims from around the world. The dutiful gather in Mecca as equals in worship of Allah. Their congregation is a beautiful representation of assimilation and acceptance of one another for the sake of Allah. Amazingly, here in America, Muslims reflect this divergence in that we hail from an astonishing 80 different countries from all corners of the world. The great diversity among American Muslims is a pure reflection of the ideals of equality at the core of our American identity - this is both fascinating and quite worthy of celebration. The following dishes are a small display of and tribute to this diversity. The fact that our food can fuse together so beautifully reflects our connection as humans. These dishes combine elements of celebrated ethnic traditions in such a way that can only be inspired by Allah's awesome palette of world cultures.
The first of our recipes fuses Moroccan spices with a traditional Greek dish. This makes a great appetizer for the festivities coming soon.
1 recipe of Moroccan Spinach
¾ to 1 cup Feta cheese, crumbled
Melted butter or olive oil (or a combination of both)
1 box of Phyllo Sheets, thawed according to package directions
Prepare Moroccan Spinach according to recipe making sure to press all water from spinach before seasoning. Stir in feta.
Preheat oven to 350oF
Remove thawed phyllo from box, cover with plastic wrap and a damp towel.
Take one sheet of phyllo and place open on counter. Brush it with melted butter, olive oil or a combination of both. Put another sheet on top and brush it as well.
Cut sheet into 3 strips crosswise (about 4 by 11 inch strips)
Put about one full teaspoon of filling on the end of the rectangle closest to you. Fold corner of phyllo over to enclose filling and form a triangle. Continue to fold up the strip in triangles, like folding up a flag, until you come to the end of your strip. Brush seal with butter/oil.
Transfer spanakopitas to parchment paper lined baking sheet, seam side down.