Ek Mek

Cook time 45 minutes
Servings 4

Take the kataifi pastry out to thaw approximately 30 minutes before beginning this recipe.

Ingredients

Base
375g kataifi pastry, available from Sweet Greek or delis
50g unsalted butter, melted


Sugar Syrup
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup water


Custard
5 pellets Masticha Chios available from Sweet Greek or Greek delis
500ml milk
5 egg yolks
125g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
40g cornflour

150ml pouring cream
1 tsp icing sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
Toasted crushed walnuts and pistachios, to serve

Ek Mek

Take the kataifi pastry out to thaw approximately 30 minutes before beginning this recipe.

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced, and line a baking tray with baking paper.

To make the custard, grind the Masticha Chios into a powder in a mortar and pestle and add to a large saucepan with the milk over low-medium heat and cook until little bubbles start to appear. Remove from heat.

In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla until pale and the sugar has dissolved. Mix the cornflour with about a tablespoon of the warm milk to make a paste then add that to the egg and sugar mixture.

Pour the remaining milk, in a very slow stream, into the egg mixture, whisking continuously. Once the milk is fully combined, strain the custard through a fine strainer into a clean saucepan and return to a low-medium heat. Whisk continuously to form a beautiful, velvety custard. Remove from the heat and pour into a clean bowl. Cover with cling wrap to prevent a skin forming, and refrigerate until cool.

To make the base, remove the kataifi pastry from the packet and tease the threads apart. Take a portion of kataifi and shape it into a disc that will fit into the base of the serving glass, using the glass as a guide. Each disc should be approximately 1.5cm thick. Repeat to make 4 discs.

Place the discs on the prepared baking tray. Dab a little melted butter over each disc using a pastry brush. Be careful not to overdo it. Bake until golden brown and crispy, about 8 minutes. Remove to cool.

To make the sugar syrup, combine the sugar and water in a medium saucepan and simmer for 5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved.

In a bowl, whisk the cream with sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.

To assemble, layer the cooled kataifi discs into the base of a serving glass, drizzle some sugar syrup over it, then place the custard on top, and finish with the whipped cream and crushed nuts.