Patsavoura: Bunched Phyllo Cheese Pie

  • 01 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Start With Phyllo Pieces

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie
    A mess of leftover phyllo. Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    While making Tyropitakia (small cheese pies), I came across part of the phyllo that hadn't defrosted properly and several sheets were stuck together at a corner. During preparation, a few sheets were torn. I kept going with the Tyropitakia and set aside the damaged pieces of phyllo, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap.

    The recipe for the cheese pies calls for enough filling for one pound of packaged phyllo sheets, so I was left with a small amount of filling and a small amount of damaged phyllo...MORE sheets - some with just a corner that had stuck together, some in small pieces.

    Note: For this recipe, the ideal minimum is three layers of phyllo pieces for the bottom and three for the top, and 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) of filling; however, it can be made with more of both (or less filling, if using a smaller baking dish).

    The common name of this recipe is patsavoura, which means "rag" and describes its somewhat raggedy appearance.

    Continue to 2 of 6 below.
  • 02 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Bunch Up the Phyllo

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie
    Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    Preheat the oven to 350F (175C).

    Lightly butter a baking pan. Bunch up the smaller pieces of the phyllo and lay in the pan. Save larger pieces for the top.

    Continue to 3 of 6 below.
  • 03 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Cover the Bottom of the Pan

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie
    Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    It isn't important how the phyllo looks or which way it's placed in the pan. Just make sure the bottom of the pan is covered.

    Continue to 4 of 6 below.
  • 04 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Three Layers and Add Cheese

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pies
    Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    Continue adding pieces of phyllo - bunching the larger pieces, and laying the smaller pieces on as well - until reaching the equivalent of at least three layers of phyllo. Drop cheese filling by the teaspoonful on top, spaced out as needed.

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • 05 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Cover With Larger Pieces and Bake

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pies
    Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    Use the largest pieces of phyllo for the top, creating the equivalent of at least three layers. If only one large piece remains, place smaller pieces first, and use the largest piece(s) as the top layer.

    Brush top lightly with butter.

    Score the top (do not cut through to the bottom) into pieces and bake at 350F (175C) on the rack just below the middle of the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

    Continue to 6 of 6 below.
  • 06 of 06

    Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pie: Cut and Serve

    Making Leftover Phyllo Cheese Pies
    Greek Patsavoura with Cheese. Photo © N. Gaifyllia, licensed to About.com

    This cheese pie is very light and very flaky - and because phyllo can be very forgiving, chances are that no one will know the phyllo sheets weren't perfect!

    Note: This cheese pie can be made this way intentionally, using bunched up sheets of phyllo as shown, only with full sheets instead of broken pieces.

    Try it also with more than one layer; for example, 3 layers of bunched phyllo on the bottom, cheese, 1-3 layers of bunched phyllo in the middle, cheese, top layers.

    Leftover phyllo and...MORE filling used in the photos are from Tyropitakia (small cheese pies).