This is my mother-in-law Elaine's recipe. Her notes:

The first one is a very rich recipe for the Galactoboureko which is the sweet custard desert. Low calorie it is not! Best to make same day you will use it as filo gets soggy after refrigeration. Make syrup first and let it cool. As soon as custard is out of the oven, pour the cooled syrup over the hot pastry. Let it cool in the pan so syrup is absorbed by the pastry prior to cutting and serving. If you can find it (possibley in a Greek market or in a Greek restaurant that may sell it), drizzle some Sour Cherry Glyko around the pastry and put a few of the sweetened cherries around and on top of the pastry when serving it. The Sour Cherry Glyko comes in a jar with the cherries in a sweet rather heavy syrup. It is a spoon sweet imported from Greece and is divine with the custard pastry and looks very elegant as well. They serve it like that at the Itaki Restaurant.

When you unpackage filo dough, put on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper and place a dampened cotton towel over it. Otherwise filo will dry up and crumble quickly when the air hits it. Take out one sheet at a time for layering and buttering. If you can't find fresh filo in a Greek market, buy frozen at Whole Foods Market. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator prior to use. Do not buy the Country Style Frozen Filo. It is too thick for this pastry. The regular filo is fine. Recipe may sound a little complex at first, but really it goes quickly when you are preparing it.

4 cups milk
2 cups heavy or all purpose cream
1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp. farina
1/2 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
1 tbsp. vanilla
1/2 to 3/4 lb. filo leaves
2 sticks unsweetened butter (melted and clarified)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Prepare Syrup: In 1 quart saucepan over medium heat, bring 3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup water to boiling. stirring. Reduce heat to low, simmer 8 - 10 minutes or until thickened. Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Take off heat and let cool prior to use. This is a simple syrup. You can add cinnamon stick and whole cloves if you want to make it a little spicy or some lemon rind along with the lemon juice. If you want some extra syrup to heat and pour over each piece of pastry as it is served increase amount of sugar and water to 1 cup each and don't use it all when first poured over the hot pastry out of the oven.

1. Grease with softened butter. a 13 x 9 inch pan. In a 3 quart saucepan over medium heat, heat milk and heavy cream just until boiling being careful to watch it so it won't boil over.

2. In small bowl, mix farina and sugar; very gradually sprinkle into milk mixture, stirring with a wire whisk -- heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook stirring constantly until slightly thickened (5 - 10 minutes). Remove from heat and cool slightly.

3. In large bowl with mixer at high speed, beat egg yolks and vanilla until mixed well. Reduce speed to medium -- gradually beat in hot milk and farina mixture. Temper egg mixture first with some of the hot milk and farina mixture if you do not want eggs to curdle. Cool slightly while preparing filo in baking pan.

4. In baking pan, place one sheet of filo, allowing it to extend up sides of pan -- brush with butter using a pastry brush and cover filo with the butter all over or it will dry out. Repeat layers to build up base of the pastry; 5 to 8 sheets of filo buttering each one. Pour farina mixture into pan.

5. Cut remaining filo to size of pan. Place remaining sheets in pan buttering each. Fold over any edges overhanging from bottom layers of filo and push together with top layers to make an edge all around the pan. Brush with more butter as needed so that top layer and edging is completely covered with butter. This will make it nice and crispy when done.

6. With a very sharp knife, carefully cut top layers only of the filo into serving size squares. Some of the custard may leak through a bit as you cut because the custard mixture is very soft or soupy at this point but that is ok. Do not cut through to the bottom layer of filo.

7. Bake in 375 degree oven 40 - 45 minutes. Top should be golden brown and crisp. Filling can be tested with a knife to make sure it is cooked through. If no filling comes off on the knife, it is done. If you have a hot oven, bake at 350 degrees. Watch carefully and cover filo with sheet of aluminum foil if getting to dark and custard is not cooked enough.

8. Pour cooled syrup over hot custard pastry as soon as removed from oven. It may look like of syrup but it will be all absorbed by the custard as it cools.

9. Cool at least one hour before serving.

10. To serve: Finish cutting through layers the squares of pastry where you have scored them prior to baking and through custard and bottom layers of filo. Remove pieces with a spatula and serve as indicated above. Serve at room temperature or just slightly warmed. Bake same day or 1 day before -- try NOT to refrigerate for best results during initial serving.

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