Well, summer weather here in Lesvos was in full force this weekend and instead of being home and writing the updated blog post that I needed to be, I was swimming in the sea and eating ice cream with my husband. The sea was cold, really cold, at first but after a few minutes my body adjusted and it was spectacular!!! Summer is really one of the best times to be in Greece, and I only have 10 more days of my Greek summer because I am heading to the USA in exactly 10 days! I will (unfortunately) be flying solo, my hubby will still have school and will not be able to join until (maybe) July – I am NOT too excited about that part though. Thank God for skype!!!
Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that in a couple of weeks I might only be able to post once a week until all of the wedding hoopla is over! But to make up for that (hopefully), on my next post I will finally announce the official first giveaway for Seemingly Greek! It will include: a bottle of nice extra virgin olive oil, some Greek oregano, some souvlaki meat seasoning, a sesame seed nougat bar, and some ouzo – ALL natural products from my island here in Lesvos, and if the winner is a fan of sardines, I will throw some of those in too!!! Exciting, right? (Coming in the next post officially)
Now, for another wonderful recipe. . . A twist on galakotbureko. This is a very popular sweet here in Greece and even throughout other middle eastern countries. It is typically made in individual portions wrapped with traditional phyllo, but what I thought was phyllo in my freezer was actually puff pastry! To my surprise, it turned out really great with the change, different than the typical but still excellent in texture and flavor.
A Twist on Galaktobureko Recipe: Serves 8-10
3 1/4 cups whole milk
1/2 cup fine semolina*
2 T. thick semolina*
2 T. cornstarch
1 cup sugar, separated into 1/2 cup portions
1/2 – 1 T. lemon peel, grated
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/3 cup butter
10-12 phyllo sheets or 2 puff pastry sheets
(*Semolina can be replaced by cream of wheat)
3/4 – 1 cup water
3/4 – 1 cup sugar
Preheat your oven to 350°/175°. Heat milk in heavy bottom pot. Mix semolina, cornstarch, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt – add to simmering milk. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until it begins to thicken, then remove from heat. In a separate bowl, beat eggs at a high speed for 2 minutes and then slowly add the remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Stir in vanilla while the milk/semolina mixture cools slightly. Prepare a 9×13″ pan or a round spring form pan with light butter. Gently fold the egg mix into semolina until smooth. Layer either 7 phyllo sheets or 1 puff pastry into the bottom of the pan, evenly pour the mixture and top with 5 remaining phyllo sheets or final pastry puff. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and pulling away from the edges. While cooking prepare the simple syrup by boiling for 5 minutes and then letting cool. Remove pan from oven and spoon cooled syrup onto the hot dessert. Cool and serve. You can also prepare individual desserts by spooning the filling into buttered phyllo sheets and wrapping and folding into a rectangular present shapes, topping with syrup too.
All in all, I think that the puff pastry is easier to use than phyllo sheets but it also soaks in most of the syrup. If you prefer a typical galaktobureko than you will want to use phyllo sheets, but if you are in the mood for something easier with a slightly chewy crust, puff pastry is definitely the way to go! I think the lemon peel gives the perfect compliment of citrus and sweet to this custard-like filled pie. Perfect not that it is summer time…!!!