Galaktoboureko - Greek Vanilla Ice
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12-15
  • 12 sheets of Filo Pastry
  • 8½ cups full cream milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1½ tsp vanilla extract (pure, none of that fake stuff)
  • 1¼ cup of heavy cream
  • 1 cup corn flour
  • ½ cups fine semolina
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1¼ cup butter melted
  • 2 cups water
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400F
  2. Custard: With a wire wisk, mix together milk, egg yolks, half of sugar, vanilla essence and cream in large saucepan. When blended, turn on medium-high heat, continuously stirring with a wooden spoon.
  3. Add corn flour and semolina in heaped tablespoons, mixing continuously. Reduce heat to low and stir continuously for approximately 15 minutes, or until the custard is very thick.
  4. Mix in the butter, and set aside to cool slightly.
  5. Using a pastry brush, grease the inside of a 13" x 9" glass baking dish.
  6. Peel off first sheet of filo pastry and place it in the dish, making sure it sticks to and goes over the sides. Overlap pastry sheets to fit, brushing melted butter between sheets.
  7. Continue until 7 layers of filo pastry are completed.
  8. Slowly poor the custard over the filo pastry evenly. You want to not have to mess with spreading this around at all, you may even want to tilt the dish to get it even.
  9. Top with 5 layers of filo and melted butter, and fold the overhanging filo on top.
  10. Bake at 400F' for 30 minutes.
  11. While it is baking in a small saucepan, stir together the remaining cup of sugar and water. Bring to a boil but do not stop stirring (use a wooden spoon, sugar can be reactive to metal at higher temps). When the Galaktoboureko comes out of the oven, spoon the hot sugar syrup over the top, particularly the edges. Cool completely before cutting and serving. Store in the refrigerator.
  12. Remove vanilla slice from the oven, score the top ready for slicing, and pour the cold syrup over the top. Chill.
If you substitute round cake pans like I have in the past I usually use more filo because I have to cut them round and use TWO pans. I usually go through 1½ box of filo. It all depends on the brand you buy. I think it looks gorgeous and when I make it this way, I make a batch of the syrup to drizzle over when I serve it fresh. Make sure you still do the first layer of syrup.
Recipe by Cabin Goddess at