250g kataifi dough (9 oz.)
50g butter, melted (2 oz.)
80-100g pistachios, chopped (3.5 oz.)
For the syrup
200g sugar (7 oz.)
200g water (4/5 of a cup)
lemon peel from half a lemon
1 cinnamon stick
For the custard
750g whole milk, cold (3 cups)
150g sugar (5.5 0z.)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
75g corn starch (2.6 oz.)
4-5 egg yolks (depending on the size of the eggs)
75g butter (2.6 oz.)
a pinch of powdered mastic (optional)
For the whipped cream
500g cold heavy whipping cream (2 cups)
60g icing sugar (2 oz.)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
To prepare this traditional Ekmek kataifi recipe start by making the base. Preheat the oven to 170C and unroll the kataifi dough from the plastic sleeve. Work the kataifi dough with your hands, tearing apart the shreds and spreading the strands out a bit if they clump together, in order to get fluffy. For this ekmek kataifi recipe you will need a 25cm square non-sticking baking dish. Butter the bottom of the baking dish and spread the kataifi dough to form the base of the ekmek kataifi. Pour over the melted butter and bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, until crispy and nicely coloured.
In the meantime prepare the custard for the ekmek kataifi (steps 2-4). Add in a large bowl the egg yolks with half the sugar (100g) and whisk until fluffy. Add 3-4 tbsps of the milk and the corn starch and whisk again until the corn starch has dissolved. Set aside.
Pour the rest of the milk in a large non-sticking pan and add the sugar and the vanilla extract. Place the pan over high heat and bring to the boil. As soon as the milk comes to the boil, remove from the heat and ladle gradually 1/3 of the milk into the egg mixture, whilst whisking. Place the pan (with the remaining milk) again on the stove and turn the heat down to medium. Add the egg mixture into the pan with the remaining warm milk. Whisk continuously, until the mixture has thickened and is smooth and creamy. Remove the pan from the stove, add the butter and stir.
Pour the custard in a large tray, cover with some plastic wrap (the plastic wrarp should be touching the custard, so that it doesn’t form a crust) and let it cool, while you prepare the rest of the ekmek kataifi recipe.
Turn the kataifi out of the oven and let it cool down completely.
Prepare the syrup for the ekmek kataifi. Add all the ingredients for the syrup into a small pot and bring to the boil. Simmer the syrup of 3 minutes (without stirring), until slightly thickened and remove from the stove. Leave the syrup aside to cool down for a while, until lukewarm. Ladle slowly the lukewarm syrup over the cold baked pastry, enabling each ladle to be absorbed. Set aside to cool down for a while.
Prepare the whipped cream and assemble the ekmek kataifi. Top the kataifi base with the custard and even out using a spatula. Put the cold heavy cream into a mixer’s bowl, add the icing sugar and whisk on high speed until medium peaks form, about 1 minute. Top the ekmek kataifi with the whipped cream and even out. Sprinkle with the chopped pistachios and a pinch of cinnamon.
Store the ekmek kataifi in the fridge and serve cold. Enjoy!