For the bougatsa
400-450g phyllo dough (15 ounces)
200g butter, melted (7 ounces)
1kg milk (35 ounces)
200g sugar (7 ounces)
120g all-purpose flour (4.5 ounces)
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the topping
To make this traditional bougatsa recipe, start by making the filling (steps 1-3). To prepare the filling for the bougatsa add in a large bowl the sugar, eggs and flour; whisk until the ingredients combine.
Pour into a saucepan the milk and the vanilla extract and bring to the boil. Right before the milk comes to the boil, ladle 1/3 of the milk into the flour mixture and stir.
Turn the heat down and add the flour mixture into the saucepan with the remaining warm milk. Whisk very quickly, until the mixture has thickened and is smooth and creamy. (Do not remove the pan from the stove.) This should take 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the stove and stir occasionally, to keep the custard from forming a skin on top, while you prepare the rest of the bougatsa recipe.
For this bougatsa recipe you will need a large baking tray, approx. 20×30 cm. Using a pastry brush, butter the bottom and sides of the tray.
Unroll the phyllo dough from the plastic sleeve. To make this bougatsa recipe you will need 10-12 phyllo sheets. Use 5-6 sheets of phyllo for the bottom of the bougatsa and 4-5 sheets for the top.
Begin by layering the sheets one by one on the bottom of the tray, making sure to sprinkle each one thoroughly with melted butter. Tip in the custard, smoothing the surface with a spatula and fold the phyllo sheet flaps over the custard. Top the bougatsa with 4-5 phyllo sheets, sprinkling each sheet with melted butter. With a knife trim some of the excessive phyllo, if you like, and roll the rest on the edges. Brush the top with enough butter and scar the top of the bougatsa with a sharp knife.
Bake the bougatsa in preheated oven at 160 for 45 minutes, until the phyllo is crisp and golden.
Let the bougatsa cool down for a while before serving and sprinkle with icing sugar and cinnamon. Enjoy while still warm with a hot cup of coffee or tea.