Galaktoboureko - Greek Semolina Custard Bars

“Galaktoboureko, a specialty of Ithaca, Greece, is a kind of custard pie encased in several layers of phyllo brushed with melted butter. This version is made at Artopolis bakery in New York City, which offers a variety of Greek breads and pastries. From our local newspaper.”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In large saucepan, heat milk to just below boiling.
  2. Remove and set aside.
  3. In a bowl, beat egg yolks, sugar and semolina until pale yellow.
  4. Whisk in milk.
  5. Return mixture to clean saucepan and set over low heat.
  6. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until custard thickens and comes away from sides of the pan, about 5 to 6 minutes.
  7. Stir in vanilla and lemon zest: set aside.
  8. Preheat oven to 375°F Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.
  9. Lay half the phyllo sheets in pan, brushing each one with butter before putting it in the pan, and letting them come partially up the sides.
  10. Do not butter last layer.
  11. Pour custard over phyllo, taking care not to disturb the pastry.
  12. Gently smooth with a spatula.
  13. Lay remaining phyllo over custard, brushing each layer with butter.
  14. Carefully tuck excess phyllo into sides of pan.
  15. With a sharp knife, score top few layers into 3-inch squares.
  16. Bake 45 to 50 minutes until golden.
  17. Lower temperature if it browns too quickly.
  18. While pastry bakes, combine water, sugar and lemon zest in heavy saucepan and bring to a boil.
  19. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until it lightly coats a spoon.
  20. Remove pastry and cut though score marks to bottom of pan.
  21. Let cool completely then pour on hot syrup and serve.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a