Thursday, 15 August 2013

theodora's batsaria (batsaria tis theodoras)

this is a recipe i've been wanting to make for a long long time....i remember standing in my mother in law's kitchen in athens watching her make batsaria and she made it for us a few times when she and my father in law came to australia to visit..fortunately i wrote the recipe out as i watched her making it in my kitchen on that visit nearly 30 years ago..older greeks like my mother in law never followed recipes but learned to cook by watching others and following their instincts so i knew when i was making it to do the same and not adhere strictly to the quantities listed..

theodora's batsaria



1 large bunch of spinach
1 medium onion grated
6 spring onions cut fine
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped dill
125 gms feta crumbled
1 tablespoon (tbs) yoghurt
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup rice
1/2 cup trahana
2 eggs lightly beaten
2 tbs olive oil
2 teaspoons (tsp) pepper
2 tsp salt


2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
2 tbs yoghurt
2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp salt


olive oil
125 gms feta crumbled



~ wash spinach well, place in a colander, sprinkle with salt, and leave to drain while preparing the other ingredients
~ squeeze the spinach well, chop into medium pieces, and place in a large mixing bowl along with the other filling ingredients


~ mix eggs, milk, yoghurt, salt and oil and add enough flour and semolina (adding a smaller proportion of semolina to flour) to make a thick batter


~ oil a baking dish well and place half of the batter on the bottom spreading it out with a wet spoon
~ add filling
~ add a few tablespoons of water to the remaining batter, mix well, and drizzle on the top of the filling
~ sprinkle with the feta and drizzle with olive oil
~ cover with foil and bake at 180 deg c for half an hour, remove foil, continue to cook for a further 30 minutes or until the pie is well browned


my batsaria did not resemble my mother in law theodora's pie in appearance or texture but it did have the flavour i remember loving so much..i remember her pie having more dough on the bottom and top (even though i doubled the recipe) and hers was quite chewy..i also don't remember her pie having as much feta on the top of it and my pie was not nearly as oily as hers either but i always use less oil than a greek cook would use..i don't buy unseasonal vegetables so i didn't add the zucchini listed in the recipe but i will certainly add this ingredient in summer when i have them growing..

next time i make it i will try using a smaller baking dish to see if that makes a difference to the dough layer and i'll use less feta on top too..and maybe just a little bit more oil!

for my children


  1. Never heard of this Greek recipe before - it sounds gorgeous - love the dedication x

    1. thanks wcd..i think it's important to document family recipes for future generations..x

  2. Your blog is better than any Greek cookbook :)

  3. Good on you, Jane. Now you've written this delicious recipe down, it will be here hopefully for whenever your children want to make it in the future! xx

    1. thanks celia..all of my children like to cook and they're interested in their cultural heritage so, as you said, the recipe is available to them should they ever decide to make it..

  4. We owe you a debt of gratitude Jane, this looks amazing and right up our collective alley when it comes to tasty nutritious grub. Cheers for sharing it with us and for giving us something to make with our excess green things :)