Joanne Weir Follow @ChefJoanneWeir

Sweet Bisteeya

Just one of the many incredible recipes from my Moroccan friend, Chef Bahija.

Serves 8



Canola, Safflower or Vegetable oil for frying
16 phyllo leaves, cut into circles, 9" diameter
1 cup blanched almonds
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons cornstarch
4 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of kosher salt
2 tablespoons ground blanched almonds
3 drops Moroccan orange flower water or to taste



Heat 1/2" oil in a large skillet. Fry phyllo, 2 pressed together at a time, on both sides until pale golden and crisp. Drain. Leave oil in skillet and brown almonds in oil. Drain and when cool, finely chop. Mix with powdered sugar and cinnamon.

Blend cornstarch with 1/4 cup milk. Heat 3 3/4 cups milk, 1/2 cup sugar to boiling point. Stirring constantly, add cornstarch and cook until thick and sauce coats spoon. Add 2 tablespoons ground almonds and orange flower water. Whisk until smooth and continue cooking 1 minute. Remove from heat and let cool.

Just before serving, assemble bisteeya. Place 2 sets of leaves on a large serving platter. Sprinkle with one-third of the chopped and browned almonds. Cover with 2 sets of leaves and spoon over 2 spoonfuls of the milk sauce. With a spoon, press down on the leaves slightly. Cover with 2 sets of leaves and sprinkle with one-third almonds. Cover with remaining leaves and spoon over 2 spoonfuls of sauce. Sprinkle with remaining almonds. Serve remaining orange blossom custard sauce in a small bowl.