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Greek recipe request, & I tried to be good

Greek recipe request, & I tried to be good

Old May 7th, 2005, 05:58 AM
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Greek recipe request, & I tried to be good

Hi
I know some people here are irritated by recipe exchanges. I thought that for the first time I would go to the Fodors forum on "Other" topics and post my question there, and then alert some of you here to please respond over there. It turns out there is no there there, there is no subtopic for recipes. So this is the long disclaimer as to why I'm posting it here.

I'm looking for the perfect recipe for the Greek pastry Galaktaboureko.
It is one of my favorite desserts, and I have never made it myself. I found one at Epicurious (they called it "Greek Semolina Custard Pie", or something awful-sounding like that)
but I don't want to experiment, I'd love someone's tried-and-true version, (or someone's grandmother's tried-and-true version), and encouragment on why it's so good (custardy, not grainy, not dry). I'm a fairly good baker, so phyllo doesn't scare me (just worries me a little ) but it's the custard part that has to be wonderful.
thanks
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Old May 7th, 2005, 06:14 AM
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http://dessert.allrecipes.com/az/70320.asp

Not tried and true but at least I can understand the steps to making it

Send me a piece when you have made it!
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Old May 7th, 2005, 06:23 AM
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If I make it I would happily send you some, but this is one dessert that would not travel well (don't tell Fodors).

However, I'd be happy next December to send you a fruitcake.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 08:57 AM
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Hi elaine,

I looked at Scarlett's recommended recipe. It looks good.

>custardy, not grainy, not dry<

Two suggestions:

1. "When milk comes to a boil, gradually add the semolina mixture, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon."

I suggest taking the milk off the heat and using a whisk while adding the semolina. From then on, cook as if it were a risotto - stir almost constantly with a wooden spoon.

2. "Fold the whipped eggs into the hot semolina mixture."

Add about 1/4 of the semolina to the eggs while stirring. (This allows the eggs to warm up without scrambling.) Then fold this mixture into the semolina.

Tell us how it worked out.

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Old May 7th, 2005, 09:19 AM
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elaine, only for you would I try another fruitcake
I look forward to hearing how this comes out as it does sound very tastey!
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Old May 7th, 2005, 09:25 AM
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Isn't the allrecipes site great ? I like seeing real people and real family recipes with ratings and comments...especially when I am looking for a specific good old fashioned dish I need the basic recipe for, then can modify it...I have gotten TONS of recipes there.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 10:21 AM
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ira, you know about making galaktaboureko?
You are truly a Renaissance man!
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Old May 7th, 2005, 10:39 AM
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Hi elaine,

>..you know about making galaktaboureko?

Nope. First time I ever heard of it, but the methodology is common.

>You are truly a Renaissance man!<

Thank you, but I'm not that old.


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Old May 7th, 2005, 12:02 PM
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Since I seem to be dealing with non-Greeks here (oh well, I'm not either, we can't all be perfect) I thought I'd offer a little help on how to pronounce the name of this dessert, should you be lucky enough to order it from a menu or bakery

It's

Gah lahk ta BOOR eh ko (sort of)

Damn, wish I had some in the house. Non-fat sugar-free strawberry yogurt just won't hit the spot now.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 02:49 PM
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By coincidence, yesterday I bought a copy of "Craig Claiborne's Favorites from the New York Times, Vol. 4" (1978) from the $1 bin at the Strand Bookstore, and it includes a recipe for galaktoboureko. It's similar to the allrecipies recipe, but the proportions are slightly different. Here is a copyright-safe summary:

2 qts plus 1 c milk
10 lg eggs
1 c sugar
2/3 c semolina
2 tsp vanilla
1 lb butter
1 lb phyllo

Syrup:

18 oz sugar
12 oz water
cinnamon stick
few drops lemon juice

Heat the 2 qts milk. Beat eggs, sugar, semolina, vanilla, 1 c cold milk, and add to warm milk. Cook until thick, and add 4 tbsp butter. Chill.

Heat oven to 400 f. Line "16-by-11-by-12-inch" (sic - probably should be 16-by-11-by-2-inch) pan with half of phyllo and butter. Add custard, top with remaining phyllo and butter, and cut through layers of phyllo above custard in diamond pattern. Bake 15 mins, reduce heat to 350 f, bake another 45 mins.

Boil syrup ingredients until thick and pour over warm pastry.

I haven't tried either recipe, and have no idea which is better. I do like the addition of butter to the custard in the Claiborne recipe, however, as well as the cinnamon and lemon in the syrup.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 03:34 PM
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I used to swear by the late, great Craig Claiborne--like Julia Child, he never failed me
thanks!
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Old May 8th, 2005, 09:06 AM
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I got a wonderful Greek cookbook while in Porto Heli in 1998. The ingredients are similar to those recipes already mentioned, but the method is slightly different. Called my friend, Helen (who is Greek and helped me choose the cookbook) and she agrees that this is thr traditional method:

Beat the eggs and sugar. Add the semolina, beating continuously. Stir in the milk. Continue the stirring over a low heat until the mixture reaches the boiling point. Romove from the heat, add vanilla and cover the saucepan.

Galaktoboureko means "milk pudding."
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Old May 8th, 2005, 12:36 PM
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thank you also, Sue
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Old May 8th, 2005, 12:44 PM
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elaine, me too!
I have both New York Times Cookbooks and still use them often.
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Old May 8th, 2005, 03:49 PM
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When we went to Greece in 1998, we went with friends from her in crystal Lke Il. They own restaurants here ( as do most Greeks in the Chicago area) and also own a home in Porto Heli. There is no better way to visit a country for the first time than to go with friends who were born there!
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Old May 10th, 2008, 07:49 AM
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I made a pan of galaktoboureko yesterday using the allrecipe version. It is okay but too grainy. I like the looks of the Craig Claiborne recipe as it calls for more milk, eggs, and less farina, probably resulting in a more custard-like filling rather than what I made yesterday, which is a very rich cream of wheat type consistency between layers of phyllo dough! Good luck and bon appetit!
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Old May 10th, 2008, 09:34 AM
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"Gah lahk ta BOOR eh ko (sort of)"

I've never heard it pronounced like that in Greece or Cyprus but have heard galatoboureko or galaktoboureko and galatobourekia for plural. Gala means milk in Greek, bourek is not really pudding but a pastry common all over the middle east/med. It can be savoury or sweet.
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Old May 17th, 2008, 07:22 PM
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since I originally started this thread in 2005 and someone else just topped it, I'll include the recipe that I have developed over the years and am very happy with

Elaine’s Galaktabouriko


Syrup—make ahead, or day before, keep at room temperature after cooking
Combine 1 cup of water with ¾ cup of sugar in saucepan, bring to simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add ½ cup honey, 2 cinnamon sticks, long strips of the rind of one orange or lemon, 4 whole cloves, boil for 10-15 minutes until slightly thickened. Let cool to room temp, remove rind and cloves and sticks, no need to refrigerate.

Filling—make ahead, bring to room temperature
2 eggs plus 4 egg yolks, beaten with ¼ tsp salt
6 cups whole milk
1 cup semolina flour
1 cup sugar
4 T unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla
finely grated zest of one orange

In saucepan, combine milk and sugar, whisking to dissolve sugar, bring to a simmer. Slowly pour in the semolina, whisking constantly so that there are no lumps. Whisk, bring to a slow boil, and cook until thick but still creamy, 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat, whisk in eggs/salt, and then the butter, zest, and vanilla. Pour into bowl, cover with plastic wrap, cool to room temperature.

Filo
Defrost package in refrigerator the previous night, let sit at room temperature for two hours before using. Remove from package, lay flat on a damp tea towel, cover with another damp tea towel. Butter a 13 X 9” pan. Melt one stick of butter, keep hot. Transfer one filo sheet to pan, top with two more sheets, edges can overhang. Brush top sheet with melted butter. This is one layer. Add another layer of three sheets, butter the top sheet, then add a third layer of three sheets. Pour in filling, spreading evenly. Top with two more layers (three sheets each) of filo, with melted butter brushed between the layers. Tuck in all edges of the dough. Pour remaining butter over the top, sprinkle top with a little cinnamon if desired. Score the top into diamond or square shapes.
Bake at 350 until light golden brown. Remove from oven, immediately pour the reserved syrup all over it. Let rest to cool, 1-2 hours so syrup can soak in and the filling can set for cutting. This can sit at room temperature overnight (refrigerating it will make the filo less crisp, but it will still be good.)
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Old May 17th, 2008, 07:42 PM
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elaine- óáò åõ÷áñéóôïýìå - Efcharisto- thank you!

Seeing your recipe some numbers and symbols did not show. I copied it and brought it to a blank page in WORD and it printed all correct mesurements and symbols. I wonder why Fodors does that as I see it in many posts.

I look forward to trying your recipe as I enjoy Greek food, with my Italian background.
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Old May 17th, 2008, 07:56 PM
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It did it with the Greek letters for Efcharisto. Must be something in Fodors programming.
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