Bougatsa

Greek

Bougatsa (Greek Custard Pie)

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Prep

20 minutes

Cook

35 minutes

Yield

12 pieces

Bougatsa is a delicious, traditional Greek custard pie with orange zest. It's crispy, creamy, and fresh, and so good served with coffee or tea.

This Bougatsa recipe just reminds me so much of growing up in a Greek household. Bougatsa is a Greek custard pie that is honestly, SO good. There are lots of versions with different variations of filling, but the most popular is made with a custard. Greeks often eat this as a breakfast food or a midday snack, but it’s seriously good any time of day or even as a dessert.

Bougatsa on the counter

❤️ Why You’ll Love Bougatsa

  • Crunchy: This Bougatsa is so delicious and thanks to the phyllo it has an amazing crunch that I love so much
  • Versatile: Serve this with coffee for breakfast or brunch, make it for a special occasion, or even it have it with tea after dinner for dessert
  • Authentic: Bougatsa is a famous Greek dish that is authentic. I grew up with this on the table and it’s so comforting to me

🍲 Ingredients

Semolina Flour – Semolina is a coarsely milled durum wheat. This is the flour used to make things like couscous and pasta. Semolina flour originated in Greece and you’ll find it in lots of recipes. For this instance, you do not want to sub semolina for other flour. It is not a 1:1 swap and your Bougatsa won’t turn out as planned.

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Orange Zest – One of the best parts of this pastry is the orange flavor. To get this, you use the zest of one orange. Orange zest brings a citrusy, tangy flavor to recipes and it is so good paired with the phyllo pastry and custard.

Fork cutting into Bougatsa

👩‍🍳 How to Make Bougatsa

For the filling

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar and semolina flour until well incorporated, about 1-2 minutes.
  2. In a medium pot over medium heat add the milk and vanilla extract, whisk and then heat until hot to the touch, about 4-5 minutes (do not boil). Remove from heat.
  3. Remove ⅓ cup of the hot milk mixture from the pot and slowly pour into the egg-sugar-flour mixture, stirring constantly to combine as you pour the hot milk in.
  4. Put the pot back on medium / medium-low heat and pour the egg-sugar-flour-milk mixture into the pot, whisking constantly until the mixture has thickened and is smooth and creamy and coats the back of a spoon. Do not remove the pan from the stove while whisking. This should take 5-10 minutes.
  5. Remove the pot from the heat, whisk in the salt and cubes of butter to fully combine and no lumps remain and then whisk in the orange zest. Set aside to cool while you make the phyllo crust *NOTE: whisk or stir the custard every few minutes to avoid a custard skin forming on top*

For the pastry

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Generously grease the 9×13 pan with butter and line with parchment paper.
  3. Keep the defrosted phyllo sheets (covered with a damp towel) beside the baking pan along with 1 cup melted butter and a pastry brush or spoon – now you’re ready to assemble.
  4. Place one phyllo sheet in the baking pan and brush with melted butter. Repeat with 5 more sheets of phyllo, layering and buttering each sheet, for a total of 6 phyllo sheets.
  5. Pour the custard filling into the baking dish and gently spread the custard filling evenly over the phyllo layers. Gently fold the overhanging phyllo over the custard layer (don’t worry if there’s some custard still showing)
  6. Place one phyllo sheet on top of the filling and gently brush with melted butter. Repeat with 5 more sheets of phyllo, layering and buttering each sheet, for a total of 6 phyllo sheets.
  7. Use a sharp knife to score the top layers of phyllo into 12 squares.
  8. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the top is golden brown and crispy.  Once baked, remove from the oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes before dusting with icing sugar and cinnamon.
  9. Slice along the scored lines and serve pieces warm.
Slice of Bougatsa on a plate

🪄 Tips and Tricks

  • Sprinkle the icing sugar on top right before serving. You want to avoid the pastry being too hot when you sprinkle the icing sugar because you don’t want it to melt
  • Serve warm for maximum crispiness
  • Not a fan of orange zest? You can totally omit it


🗒 Best served with

👝 How to Store Leftovers

It is best to eat this fresh but you can put in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 days. Reheat leftovers in the oven.

🤔 Common Questions

What is the difference between Galaktoboureko and Bougatsa?

Both are custard desserts made with phyllo but Galaktoboureko is soaked in citrus flavored syrup. Bougatsa is usually sprinkled with icing sugar.

What does Bougatsa mean?

Bougatsa comes from the word “pogatsa” which is used to describe salty or sweet pie, wrapped tightly in dough.

Bougatsa (Greek Custard Pie)

5 from 1 vote
Bougatsa is a delicious, traditional Greek custard pie with orange zest. It's crispy, creamy, and fresh, and so good served with coffee or tea.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Greek
Servings 12 pieces
Calories 368 kcal
I’m Your Mommy Now

Your Greek mommy that is. 😍 Step into my kitchen to learn how to make yummy Greek food. 🍽️💃

Ingredients
  

For the filling

  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup semolina flour (fine)
  • 3 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • zest from one orange

For the pastry

  • 12 phyllo pastry sheets, thawed, covered with damp towel
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted

For the topping

  • icing sugar
  • cinnamon
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Instructions
 

For the filling

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar and semolina flour until well incorporated, about 1-2 minutes.
  • In a medium pot over medium heat add the milk and vanilla extract, whisk and then heat until hot to the touch, about 4-5 minutes (do not boil). Remove from heat.
  • Remove ⅓ cup of the hot milk mixture from the pot and slowly pour into the egg-sugar-flour mixture, stirring constantly to combine as you pour the hot milk in.
  • Put the pot back on medium / medium-low heat and pour the egg-sugar-flour-milk mixture into the pot, whisking constantly until the mixture has thickened and is smooth and creamy and coats the back of a spoon. Do not remove the pan from the stove while whisking. This should take 5-10 minutes.
  • Remove the pot from the heat, whisk in the salt and cubes of butter to fully combine and no lumps remain and then whisk in the orange zest. Set aside to cool while you make the phyllo crust *NOTE: whisk or stir the custard every few minutes to avoid a custard skin forming on top*

For the pastry

  • Preheat the oven to 350F.
  • Generously grease the 9×13 pan with butter and line with parchment paper.
  • Keep the defrosted phyllo sheets (covered with a damp towel) beside the baking pan along with 1 cup melted butter and a pastry brush or spoon – now you’re ready to assemble.
  • Place one phyllo sheet in the baking pan and brush with melted butter. Repeat with 5 more sheets of phyllo, layering and buttering each sheet, for a total of 6 phyllo sheets.
  • Pour the custard filling into the baking dish and gently spread the custard filling evenly over the phyllo layers. Gently fold the overhanging phyllo over the custard layer (don’t worry if there’s some custard still showing)
  • Place one phyllo sheet on top of the filling and gently brush with melted butter. Repeat with 5 more sheets of phyllo, layering and buttering each sheet, for a total of 6 phyllo sheets.
  • Use a sharp knife to score the top layers of phyllo into 12 squares.
  • Bake for 25-35 minutes until the top is golden brown and crispy.  Once baked, remove from the oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes before dusting with icing sugar and cinnamon.
  • Slice along the scored lines and serve pieces warm.

Notes

  • Bougatsa is best enjoyed the day it is baked.
  • Storages: Leftover bougatsa can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
  • Reheat: on a sheet pan at 350F until warmed through and the phyllo gets a bit crispy again
  • If you love this dessert try our Portokalopita (Greek Orange Phyllo Cake) or Baklava Recipe

Nutrition

Calories: 368kcal | Carbohydrates: 27.3g | Protein: 7g | Saturated Fat: 12.5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7.9g | Cholesterol: 124.4mg | Sodium: 342.6mg | Fiber: 0.7g | Sugar: 12.2g
Review This Recipe Let us know how it was!
Yogi Stinco

5 stars
Greek desserts is so popular to eat for lunch or dinner

Maria Koutsogiannis

100%!!!

5 from 1 vote

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