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May 18, 2010 07:17 PM


I was in Philly this weekend at Estia (greek restaurant). It was fantastic. The icing on the cake was a dessert called Ekmek Kataifi (I believe). Does anyone on this board know if there is a greek restaurant in the Boston area that makes it?

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  1. Not sure if this is what you're talking about, but kataife is pretty easy to find: it's a shredded phyllo pastry sweetened with honey or cane syrup. The texture is similar to shredded wheat. I've found versions of it with different names at Greek, Turkish, Levantine, and Armenian restaurants and bakeries all over Greater Boston.

    A few places I can think of that seem to have it regularly or that I've had it at recently: Giorgiana's in the South End (Greek), Saray Restaurant in Allston (Turkish), Azama Grill in Allston (Egyptian/Levantine). There's a related pastry (I think) called kunife which is topped with something custard-like: they do a nice version of this at Brookline Family Restaurant in Brookline Village (Turkish). Falafel Corner in Harvard Square (Egyptian/Levantine) also has a couple of shredded-phyllo pastries.

    Brookline Family Restaurant
    305 Washington St, Brookline, MA 02445

    Azama Grill
    54 Harvard Ave, Boston, MA 02134

    3 Replies
    1. re: MC Slim JB

      Based on a quick Google search it looks as though the kunife (or sometimes kunefe) is closer - ekmek kataife is topped with both custard and whipped cream.

      1. re: Allstonian

        OMG! I had that dessert once on Mykonos at a mom & pop taverna, and it was un.believable. Haven't seen it ANYWHERE since.

        I am very psyched to hear that you can get it in Philly. Puts Estia on the top of my list for the next visit!

      2. I've had this in Turkey & in Armenian homes here. It was served with kaymak, a sinfully rich cream, just short of being butter. Kaymak can take a while to make, so I've bought it at Sevan Bakery for $14+ lb. Depending on the consistency, it can be cut in slabs to top the kataifi.

        Sevan Bakery
        599 Mount Auburn St, Watertown, MA 02472

        1. In Armenian homes it is called Kadayif and some times it is called Kadayif Bourma. There are many variations on this for the filling from walnuts to walnuts and pistachios, to cheese and even pumpkin fillings, and all with the syrup toping.
          I see it served mostly at Armenian and Greek church functions and very rarely buy baked goods any of the middleeastern markets as I prefer to make it at home.

          8 Replies
          1. re: Infomaniac

            Agreed - I just made some last week, the "cream" variety, which is my favorite - just a simple pudding made from cream, milk, cornstarch, and sugar, topped with the kadayif and syrup. The one thing I get "out" that reminds me of this type of thing, and is awesome, is the galaktoboureko at Farm Grille.

            1. re: nsenada

              I've still yet to make it out to Farm Grille and thanks for the reminder.

              1. re: nsenada

                Would you mind sharing your pudding recipe? OK, so I've never made pudding... shoot me '-)

                The ekmek I had on Mykonos was / looked like toast soaked in syrup, with that awesome custard/pudding, and a little layer of cream. Maybe some sprinkled cinnamon, I don't know, but it was delicious in its simplicity.

                1. re: linguafood

                  Will do - it's from an obscure Armenian cookbook, geared towards the Ladies' Guild set. Will post it to the home cooking section tonight.

                  1. re: nsenada

                    Cool. My man has an old Armenian community cookbook back home, but I don't have access to it right now. It would be fun to make it here.

                      1. re: linguafood

                        The only difference being that my recipe calls for pouring the syrup on after cooling for ten minutes.

                        1. re: nsenada

                          Awesome. I'll have my man make this for me, as he is the Armenian and the baker in the family '-)