One of London’s oldest Michelin-starred restaurants, Pied à Terre celebrates its 30th Birthday this year. Since 1991, the restaurant has been owned by industry veteran David Moore, having received its first Michelin star within the first 13 months of being open. Since then, the restaurant has seen three recessions, a global pandemic, and six prime ministers, alongside a total evolution of the way we eat. Over the years, the kitchen has also hosted a string of talented chefs, including Tom Aikens (Muse, London), Shane Osborn (Arcane, Hong Kong), Marcus Eaves (Oblix, London), and the current Head Chef, Greek-born Asimakis Chaniotis. In the lead-up to the restaurant being able to re-open, Asimakis Chaniotis has shared his Greek milk pie recipe, described as a refined take on a classic.
With a tower of filo pastry, featuring a total of 24 sheets cut into different sizes, the Greek milk pie looks impressive but is relatively simple to make at home. It also features fresh apricots, a cream filling, and simple lavender syrup.
On his Greek milk pie recipe, Asimakis Chaniotis says: “This is my refined take on a classic Greek Milk Pie. I created it last summer when I was in Greece, back at my family home on the island of Kefalonia, where we have apricot trees in the garden. I had fun experimenting with the harvest and made lots of apricot ‘membrillo’ to go with our cheese course at the restaurant along with this creation. The dessert is simple to make but has a wow-factor – give it a go!”
- 6 filo pastry sheets 7cm by 7 cm
- 6 filo pastry sheets 6cm by 6 cm
- 6 filo pastry sheets 5cm by 5 cm
- 6 filo pastry sheets 4cm by 4 cm
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- 3 fresh and ripe apricots cut in half, stones removed and then cut into wedge about 1cm thick
For the cream filling
- 300 ml milk
- 130 g sugar
- 60 g fine semolina
- 2 whole eggs
- 1 tbsp butter
- ⅕ vanilla pod seeded scraped or 2 drops of vanilla essence
For the lavender syrup
- 50 ml water
- 50 g sugar
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 2 sprigs lavender
- Preheat your oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
- Start with the filo pastry, which you have already cut into different sized squares. Butter each piece and stack each same-sized piece together so you have 6 piles, all different sizes. This will create an impressive tower shape when you serve your dessert.
- Place the filo piles onto a baking tray, lined with greaseproof paper, and bake for 15 minutes until golden brown.
- Meanwhile make your lavender syrup by adding all of the ingredients into a pan and bringing to a boil, before taking off the heat. Remove the sprigs of lavender.
- Over a wire rack, pour the hot syrup over the hot cooked filo pastry and leave to cool until the pastry dries out and is crispy.
- Bring the milk to the boil and add the semolina, whisk constantly until it boils and thickens.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with the sugar and the vanilla. Take the milk mix off the heat and allow to cool slightly. When still warm, but not scorching, slowly start adding the milk mixtures to your bowl whilst whisking constantly.
- Add the butter and mix until it’s all emulsified.
- Leave the mixture to cool down but mix it every 5 minutes so it will not have a crust on top, then cover with clingfilm and place in the fridge for around an hour to set completely.
- When set, remove from the fridge and whisk for a minute before transferring to a piping bag.
- To serve, place the biggest piece of filo onto a serving dish. Pipe on a circle of cream, leaving space around the edge. Repeat until you’ve finished up all of the filo and you have a tower shape. Place the wedges of apricot into the layers of filo and cream. Serve immediately.
RELATED: How To Make: Apple Pie