Greek Dessert Kataifi

You simply cannot go wrong with this dessert. It’s a great dessert recipe to serve when entertaining because it can be made a few days ahead of time. Kataifi is almost identical in flavor to baklava except, instead of phyllo pastry, a vermicelli-style shredded phyllo is used instead. Use your favorite ground nut combination to create this exquisite dessert.

Kataifi is sold in the frozen section of the grocery store (usually found in Middle Eastern/Mediterranean shops). It’s important to thaw it properly before using. Just place the kataifi box in the refrigerator the night before you will use it. In the morning place the box on the countertop and leave it at room temperature for a few hours so that it is very easy to work with. Do not take it out of its packaging until ready to use or it will dry up and crumble when you go to handle it. If you keep these helpful tips in mind you will create many delicious recipes with ease!

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Kataifi Pastry

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  • 1 package kataifi dough (1 pound), completely thawed out and at room temperature.
  • 1 pound unsalted butter, melted
  • Filling:
  • 1 cup ground walnuts
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup orange juice or lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • Syrup:
  • 2 cups honey
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 and 1/2 cups water
  • 1-2 cinnamon sticks
  • orange peel or lemon peel
  • 1/4 cup orange juice or lemon juice



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


Begin by making the syrup. Put all of the syrup ingredients into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the sugar dissolves. Allow to cool completely.


Combine all of the filling ingredients into a bowl and mix well.


Remember to defrost the kataifi dough and to allow it to come to room temperature.


Melt the butter.


Separate the kataifi dough into about 18 equal sections. Cover them with a clean dry towel and then with a damp towel over that to keep them from drying out.


Take one section at a time and brush with melted butter. Place a spoonful of filling on the bottom part of the strip of dough. Roll upwards, paying attention to the sides so that the filling does not spill out.


Place in a 9x13 inch baking tray. Repeat the process until all of the strips of kataifi dough have been filled and rolled.


Pour the remaining butter over the top of the pastries.


Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden.


Pour all of the cooled, strained syrup over the kataifi. Allow the pastry to absorb the syrup and serve! Never pour hot syrup over the hot pastry. Either cool syrup over hot pastry or hot syrup over cooled pastry.


You can save any left over filling in a Ziploc bag in your freezer for future use.

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Greek Dessert Kataifi - shredded phyllo with nuts in honey syrup

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  • Reply
    October 5, 2019 at 2:20 am

    Instead of individual rolls can I make a 9×13 pan using this recipe?

    • Reply
      October 7, 2019 at 10:28 pm

      Yes, you can. I do this to make Ekmek Kataifi

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