Dar Fez restaurant in Marrakech was where I had pigeon Bastilla, the flavours were wonderful, it is a labour of love and Dar Fez is renowned in Marrakech for this dish. I have given my own version using apples and figs, it’s a dish that can be made all year round and if you're lucky enough to have figs in season use fresh figs.
- 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced
- 12 dried figs, soaked in water, thinly sliced
- 20 sheets filo pastry
- ground cinnamon, to garnish
- icing sugar, to garnish
- 60 g caster sugar
- 30 g butter
- 150 g caster sugar
- 75 ml water
- 100 g hazelnuts
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Place apples, caster sugar and butter in saucepan, cook for 4 minutes and drain.
Place 2 sheets of filo in a shallow bowl, leaving a little bit of filo hanging over the edge of the bowl to wrap over the top. Start placing a small amount of apple and fig evenly over filo. Then place 2 more sheets of filo over apple only. Repeat this process 5 more times.
When finished fold over the excess filo and turn out the bastilla onto a tray with greaseproof paper, egg wash evenly. Bake in a preheated oven at 180ºC for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
When done dust with icing sugar, ground cinnamon and crushed praline (see below).
Roast the hazelnuts in the oven for about 10 minutes, then remove and allow to cool. Rub them together in a tea towel to remove the skins.
Heat the sugar and water together until it starts to caramelise, the pour over the nuts and leave to cool on a baking sheet.
Smash the nut mix to break it up a little then place in a blender until it is a fine crumb. Place in an airtight container until ready to use.