by Celia Sin-Tien Cheng
July 15, 2009
We’re celebrating this month’s Baking Friday prize, Vefa’s Kitchen, the new bible of Greek Cooking, by sharing three recipes from the cookbook in the days before the sweepstakes. There will be an appetizer, a main and a dessert. Here’s the third.
6 tablespoons melted clarified butter
8–9 ready-made phyllo (filo) sheets
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus extra for dusting
3 cups (750 ml / 1¼ pints) milk
generous 1 cup (225 g / 8 oz) superfine (caster) sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
confectioners (icing) sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C / Gas Mark 4) and brush a 14-inch (35-cm) round baking pan with some of the melted butter. Lay 1 sheet of phyllo on a work surface with the long edge toward you. Loosely ruffle it by pushing the short ends toward each other with your hands to create a long concertina shape, then place it upright in a loose spiral in the center of the prepared pan. Ruffle the remaining sheets of phyllo
in the same way and continue the spiral until the base of the pan is filled with phyllo ruffles. Using a pastry brush, dab the melted butter on all the surfaces of the phyllo. Sprinkle with the ground cinnamon and bake for 25–30 minutes, or until golden brown. Meanwhile, pour the milk into a pan and bring to just below boiling point, then remove from the heat. Beat the eggs with the sugar in a bowl. Gradually pour in the milk, a little at a time, beating constantly. Add the vanilla. Remove the pan from the oven and spoon the egg mixture over the baked phyllo, covering all the surfaces evenly. Return the pan to the oven and bake for 25–30 minutes more, or until the filling has set. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and extra ground cinnamon, and serve immediately.
Makes 1 large pie
Preparation time 15 minutes
Cooking time 1 hour
By Vefa Alexiadou