Eight ways with filo pastry
For a lower-fat, lower-energy way for pies, tarts and parcels, use filo pastry. Niki Bezzant shares some ideas.
Place 2 cups stewed fruit (eg. apple, pear, plums) atop a 4-layered filo sheet. Top with spoonfuls of light cream cheese. Roll into a log shape. Place join on the bottom. Lightly spray with oil. Bake in 180°C oven for 15-20 minutes until golden.
2. Spinach and feta triangles
Sauté spinach, onion and garlic. Set aside to cool then mix in a little feta. Combine well. Cut 2 filo sheets in 10cm strips. Place a spoonful of spinach mix at the bottom corner of each strip and fold in triangles to enclose filling. Bake in 180ºC oven for 10 minutes until golden.
3. Broccoli and cheese pies
Make a thick cheese sauce with trim milk, edam and a little parmesan cheese. Steam broccoli until just cooked and stir with sauce. Line single-serve ramekins or pie dishes or with 4-layered filo sheets to fit. Fill with broccoli mix and top with extra scrunched-up filo. Lightly spray with oil. Bake in 180°C oven until golden.
4. Leftover extender
Add extra veges to leftover stew and heat through. Wrap mixture in filo to make tasty pies. Bake in 180°C oven until golden.
5. Creamy mushroom parcels
Sauté mushrooms with garlic until soft and golden. Add a little reduced-fat sour cream to make a creamy mixture then spoon into 20cm x 15cm filo rectangles and roll to enclose, twisting the ends. Lightly spray with oil and bake in 180°C oven for about 10 minutes until golden. Serve with a green salad.
6. Banana and fruit filo cigars
Mix mashed bananas with chopped dried apricots, sultanas and dates. Place filling in a line at the edge of 2-layered 15cm filo squares. Fold ends in and roll into cigar shapes. Bake in 180ºC oven for 10 minutes until golden.
7. Mini bacon and egg tarts
Push 3-layered 15cm filo squares into non-stick muffin tin holes. Beat eggs with a little trim milk and pour into pastry. Top with small bacon pieces and spring onion. Bake in 180ºC oven for about 10 minutes until egg is set.
8. Pretty pie topping
For a crunchy pie/tart topping, scrunch filo pieces into rough balls. Place on top of pie filling.
For all of these ideas, slightly spray between filo layers with oil spray.