These can be made with the help of children of all ages as part of a big feast, or they work excellently as a light lunch with a green salad on the side. These parcels are easy to make and so delicious, the only problem is waiting long enough once they come out of the oven so you don’t burn your mouth!
- Place a large frying pan over a high heat, add the olive oil, then the leeks. Season with a little fine salt and a few grinds of black pepper, then stir to coat the leeks in the oil and seasoning. Cover the pan, turn the heat down a little to medium-low and sweat the leeks for 10 to 15 minutes until they are soft and a little golden - stir and check regularly so they do not burn and turn the heat down if necessary.
- Remove the lid, raise the heat to high, add the courgettes and cook for a further 3 to 4 minutes, stirring regularly, then add the spinach and cook, still stirring, for about 2 minutes so that it wilts and some of the liquid cooks off. Check the seasoning and add more if needed, but not too much as the Comté will add plenty of flavour. Transfer the vegetables into a bowl and leave to cool before stirring through the cubes of Comté (and the ham, if using).
- Heat the oven to 180℃ (160℃ fan).
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan and lay out a sheet of filo pastry on a clean, cool worktop. Brush some butter over the filo and cut it lengthways into 2 strips. Put about 2 tablespoons of the mixture at the bottom of each strip and fold each one over diagonally to make a triangle, then continue to fold over up the length of the pastry. Repeat with the remaining filling and filo pastry.*
- Arrange the parcels on a lined baking sheet and brush the tops with more butter. Bake in the centre of the oven for 18 to 20 minutes, or until they’re golden brown and cooked through. Serve immediately, but beware the piping hot filling!
*If you’re making these in advance, you can refrigerate or freeze them at this stage: just place them on a lined baking sheet, not touching each other, and place them, uncovered, in the fridge or freezer. Once they’ve firmed up in the fridge, you can cover them.
In the freezer, once frozen solid, you can keep them in a Ziplock bag. They’ll last up to 24 hours (48 hours at a push) in the fridge or up to 1 month in the freezer. If cooking from the fridge, add 2 to 3 minutes to the cooking time; if cooking from frozen, add about 5 minutes.
Comté Recipe 2021 © Laura Pope 2021