One of my favorite things to bake with is Phyllo dough. It's great for both sweet and savory pies and there are endless possibilities of deliciousness. But, if you ever baked with Phyllo dough, you know it can also very agrivating to work with. It's common to open a box of Phyllo Dough and have the sheets of dough broken. Other common problems are that the thin slices of dough stick together or they just crumble. When this happens it's impossible to shape the dough, which can totally bust your plan on using it.
Phyllo dough will crumble if it is too dry and it will stick together if it's not defrosted fully or if it's too humid. Regardless, if you can't use the dough for the lovely triangles and squares of meat goodness, layer them for baklava, or roll them up into spanakopita, then what can you do with the torn and broken up dough?
The answer is simple: you can make Feta and Phyllo dough muffins!
Step 1: Ingredients
The following recipe makes 24 muffins:
- One (1) box of Phyllo Dough, thin or thick
- One pound (1 lb) of Feta cheese (about two large chunks from the store). You can also use drained Cottage Cheese or Queso Fresco as alternatives but don't forget to add salt to these
- Five (5) regular eggs or four (4) jumbo eggs
- One generous teaspoon (1 tsp) of baking powder
- One cup (1 c) of sour cream
- One cup (1 c) of whole milk
- Large mixing bowl
- Two (2) muffin pans for 12 standard muffins
Step 2: Preparation
Leave the Phyllo Dough at room temperature for a couple of hours to defrost. Don't take it out of the plastic wrap while it's defrosting.
In a large bowl, crumble the feta and add the 4-5 eggs and mix this together. Add the sour cream and baking soda and mix. By now the mixture should be creamy and ready for the milk. Mix in the milk until all the ingredients are combined. You should have a soupy, light yellow mixture at this point.
Step 3: Working With the Dough
When the Phyllo Dough defrosts, unwrap it from the plastic and spread flat on the counter. Take 2-3 sheets at a time and cut them up with scissors or tear them up with your hands. Put them in the cheese mixture and stir. Repeat this until the majority of the sheets are used up. The soupy cheese mixture will now start to thicken up. Mix it well until the dough starts to dissolve.
Leave about 3-4 sheets of dough for lining the muffin pan. Using spray oil grease up the muffin pan generously. Line each muffin section with a layer of Phyllo dough, so it looks like a cupcake wrapper. Don't worry, we are not going for perfect or pretty here. The Phyllo dough will start absorbing the oil and you will not use much of the dough in this step. What you don't end up using you can always stir into the mix.
Step 4: Pour and Bake
Now that you have the muffin pans lined with Phyllo Dough and the cheese mixture ready, spoon the mixture into the muffin pans evenly. Bake at 400F degrees for about 45 minutes or until golden brown. When the muffins are done, leave them to cool slightly.
Serve warm or at room temperature. They make a great snack or appetizer. If you serve them as a meal, they go great with a little yogurt or with a tomato soup. Enjoy!