The Greek sweet kataifi is traditionally rolled into cylinders, but Maria uses a muffin pan to make pastry nests instead. You can use any other nuts you like and this is great served with ice-cream or Greek-style yoghurt.
- 150 g unsalted butter, melted
- 185 g kataifi pastry (see Note)
- 150 g (1½ cups) walnuts, roughly chopped
- 150 g (1 cup) almond kernels, roughly chopped
- 75 g (⅓ cup) caster sugar
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- 2 tbsp stale breadcrumbs
- 265 g (¾ cup) honey
- strawberry spoon sweet, to serve
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.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 12-hole (80 ml) muffin pan with melted butter. Cover the base and side of each mould with kataifi pastry, leaving a well in the centre of each. Brush pastry with remaining butter.
Combine nuts, sugar, spices and the crumbs in a large bowl. Place mixture in pastry nests and bake for 20 minutes or until golden.
Meanwhile, place honey in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat. As soon as it starts to simmer, remove from heat and spoon into each nest. Serve kataifi hot or cold.
• Kataifi pastry, also known as shredded and bird’s nest pastry, resembles vermicelli. It is typically used to make sweet, syrup-soaked sweets, such as baklava. It is available from the refrigerated section of select delis and supermarkets, as well as Middle Eastern food shops. Freeze leftovers in a snaplock bag for up to 1 month.
Photography Chris Chen