Custard with Orange in Phyllo Rolls “Bougatsa”

by Mary Papoulias-Platis

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When my daughter Stephanie visited Greece one summer she came home boasting about the delicious pastry “bougatsa” that she experienced in the city of Athens.  Oranges are abundant here in California so I changed the recipe from lemon which is traditional to orange zest. Feel free to substitute either one.

Bougatsa is served warm for breakfast, so the you can prepare the rolls and refrigerate the same day until you are ready to pop them in the oven. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cinnamon and you have a unique and delicious breakfast or late night desert.

Custard with Orange in Phyllo Rolls "Bougatsa"
Our favorite custard wrapped in phyllo-oh my!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Greek
  • 3 cups milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup fine semolina
  • Zest of one orange
  • Juice of one orange
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ stick butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch with 1 teaspoon cold water
  • ½ cup powdered sugar( might need more)
  • ¼ cup cinnamon
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • ½ pound phyllo dough (1/2 box), defrosted
  1. In a medium saucepan add milk, sugar and orange zest and juice. Bring to a medium heat and cook until it begins to thicken.
  2. Dissolve the cornstarch in cold water. Add the semolina, cornstarch, and water to the cream. Cook until it coats the back of your spoon about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Remove from the heat, and add the eggs one at a time, stirring constantly. Place back on a low setting and cook the eggs for 3 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat and add the butter. Let cool slightly.
  5. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  6. Lay out one sheet of phyllo on wax or parchment paper. Brush with butter. Repeat with one more sheet. Cut in ½ lengthwise.
  7. Place 2-3 tablespoons of mixture on the bottom of the sheet. Fold phyllo over cream and roll, folding sides inward as you roll.
  8. Place seam side down on a buttered sheet pan, and brush with butter.
  9. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until lightly brown.
  10. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cinnamon and serve warm.



© 2011 – 2018, Mary Papoulias-Platis. All rights reserved.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 nancy

Mary, these sound wonderful. Having friends for dinner next week and think I’ll make these for dessert.
Thanks for another great reciepe.

2 Angela

I love bougatsa. Thank you for reminding me of this ! Is the filling for galatoboureko any different?

3 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Yes, the filling is thicker, so that you can easily roll it in the phyllo. No syrup is added to the bougatsa as in the galatoboureko.

4 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Your welcome! Enjoy!

5 Annie

Hi there,
You have separated the butter. Are you using all of it (1/2 cup plus 1/2 stick) in the filling? Or some of it is for brushing the filli?

Thank you

6 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Hi Annie, You are right! The other 1/2 is for the phyllo. I will correct the recipe, and make it essier to read.

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