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Muakacha – Crinkled Filo Custard Pie with Cardamom Custard

Muakacha is a middle eastern cake made from filo pastry baked until crispy and layered with spiced custard. This plant based alternative uses a simple almond custard spiced with cardamom.


1 pack 375g filo pastry

50g butter, melted

Sugar Syrup:

1 cup (200g) sugar

1 cup (250ml) water

2 tsp rose water


1 ½ cups (360ml) almond milk

1/2 cup (120ml) thickened cream

¼ cup (40g) cornstarch

2 tbsp caster sugar

¼ tsp cardamom

¼ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla

30g pistachios, roughly chopped

Rose petals


1. Preheat the oven to 180C fan. Place the water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer for 10 mins to dissolve the sugar and slightly thicken. Add the rosewater and set aside to cool.

2. Lightly grease a 25x30cm baking tray with some of the butter. Trim the length of the filo sheets to fit the length of your tray. Working with 2 sheets of filo at a time, crinkle the sheets like an accordion and place in the tray, folded edges facing up. Repeat with the remaining filo, stacking them next to each other until you fill the tray.

3. Place in the oven for 10 minutes. Then pour the melted butter all over the sheets and return to the oven for another 10 mins until starting to crispy and golden.

4. Whisk all the custard ingredients together in a jug. Pour all over the filo and return to the oven for another 20 minutes until golden, crispy and the custard has set.

5. Pour over the syrup (it will crackle!) and top with the pistachios and rose petals. Leave to stand for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

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