Marathopites is wild fennel fried pie that originates in Crete, Greece. Although it requires a decent amount of work, it is all worth it, as it is really delicious! The pie is filled with the tips of the fennel, a little bit of onion and fresh parsley.
Many Greek also use spinach, but this time I didn’t use it, as I really love the fresh flavor of fennel and parsley. I accompanied it with a fresh salad with the leftover of the filling, the rest of the fresh fennel, alfalfa, cherry tomatoes, and corn.
To make one batch of marathopites it takes about one hour (depending on how quick you are in rolling the dough), and you will get 20 to 25 pies. As they are quite filling, you can count 3-4 per person.
- Tips of one fennel
- 1 onion
- 1 cup fresh parsley
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- Pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoon cider vinegar
Rinse the fennel and cut off its tips. Dice the tips in small pieces and set aside. Chop the onion in four parts and transfer to the blender cup. Add the parsley and roughly mix them.
Transfer the onion and parsley to a skillet, together with a few drops of olive oil. Stir-fry on a low heat until the onion is soft, then stir in the fennel tips. Mix for one more minute and then take off the heat and set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl, mix the flour with one cup water (room temperature), and one and a half spoon of olive oil. Knead it to form a dough and then transfer to a floured surface. With the help of a rolling pin, flatten the dough to a thick disc. I cut into four parts to better flatten it further.
Roll each quarter with the rolling pin to obtain a wider surface. With the help of a glass or a round cookie cutter, form as many discs as you can and transfer them to a floured surface. Put a bit of the herb filling at the center of each disc, then join the corners and twist them so they stick together. Gently pat them with your hand to obtain a thick disc and, finally, gently flatten them with the rolling pin, being careful not to break them: if you apply too much pressure, they will tear and the filling will spill.
Fry the discs in a large skillet with olive oil (or other vegetable oil) until they are golden. Transfer to a plate covered with kitchen paper.
Prepare the salad to accompany your marathopites (I used the rest of the fennel, thinly sliced, the leftovers of the filling, cherry tomatoes, and corn, with a tablespoon vegan mayonnaise).
Marathopites are perfect “edible spoons” for salads. Serve hot!