Sunday, November 10, 2013

Galaktoboureko (Greek Custard Pie)

Names been changed to

Galaktoboureko (Greek Custard Pie)
For all of you out there that love phyllo desserts and Greek food, this is King! My heritage is Greek and I love making Greek pastries. These recipes and postings are ones that I want to share with my family and my friends. Galaktouboureko in translation means Milk Pie.
It is a custard based confection, soaked in a simple light, lemon syrup and layers of crisp buttery phyllo.

This is one of the most popular and delicious desserts of Greece. In Astoria, Queens in New York, which has a large Greek community filled with delightful Greek bakeries,restaurants and pastry shops, this dessert is probably number one requested sweet treat. It is a little work,but I promise, if you love custard and sweet phyllo then this one is meant for you. I never really met anyone that
did not love this dessert. It is elegant and really makes a wonderful dessert for a dinner party.

preheat oven to 350 degrees
2 quarts whole milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 stick unsalted room temperature butter
1 cup fine semolina flour plus 1Tablespoon
1/4 cup cornstarch
10 large eggs room temperature
1 Tablespoon grated lemon peel
1 lb. package phyllo ':;
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter melted

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 slice of a peel of lemon

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Place the milk in a large heavy pot over low heat. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved, add the corn starch, and the fine semolina to the pot and stir. Increase the heat to medium and whisk constantly for 10 to 12 minutes until thick. Be very careful not to scorch the milk mixture. You must whisk constantly and watch very closely. When thick, add stick melted butter and stir well.

3. In a bowl beat the eggs until fluffy and add the lemon peel. Gradually mix some of the hot mixture in with the eggs to temper, whisking constantly. Then add the egg mixture to the milk/semolina mixture and stir very well.

 4. Melt the 1 1/2 sticks of butter and butter up a 15 by 11 inch baking dish with 2 inch sides using a pastry brush.

5. Next it is time for the phyllo dough. Be sure to have thawed it in the fridge. Directions should be in the package. This step is very important.

6. Place a sheet of phyllo dough on the bottom and butter it.

7. Now place a sheet so that it overlaps and hangs over (about 1.5 inches) the bottom edge of the dish, butter profusely. Place sheets so that they overlap the left side, then the right, the top, you get the idea all the while
buttering them so that they don't dry up and rip. Butter the edges of the dish and the corners. If a sheet rips just carefully put another on top.


8. You should use a little less then half of the phyllo on the bottom of the Galaktoboureko, pour the custard. Then carefully flip over the phyllo that hangs over each edge so that it wraps over the custard. Then add the remaining sheets of phyllo on top, buttering each one after you place it just as before. Using your little brush be sure to tuck in the corners. .

9. Cover with a little more butter using your brush and then score with a sharp knife, only cut the top layers of phyllo into squares then diagonally like picture above into triangles. Do not make these incisions too deep, and perforated lines are ok too. Do not cut into the custard. Be-careful!  You must do the scoring it is crucial, do not overlook this step.

10. Sprinkle with a little water and bake for 1 to 1 hour and 15 minutes until the top turns light, golden brown.
It will be poofy when it comes out of oven and slightly deflate.  Place pan on cooling rack to cool completely.

11. For the Syrup: In a heavy sauce pot, add water, sugar and lemon peel. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 5-10 minutes until its a little thick. Add the lemon juice at the end.

12. Remove lemon peel with a fork and pour hot syrup on cold Galaktoboureko. This is important. The Galaktboureko must be completely cooled when hot syrup is poured. Let cool to room temperature, then you can cut all the way through with a sharp knife.

Never cover your Galatoboureko with plastic wrap, just loosely cover with wax paper, otherwise the phyllo will become soggy. Layering the pan with phyllo sheets and butter, pour the custard and fold the overhang of phyllo ontop of the custard. Add more layers of phyllo sheets and butter.  Score with a sharp knife but do not cut to deep. You do not want to go into custard layer.  Sprinkle with a little water and bake for about one hour.

Pour hot syrup on cooled Galaktoboureko.  (this is important syrup must be hot and custard pie must be cool).

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