I was inspired by an African dessert called Muhallabye. A variation of an egg custard pie without the eggs. I always thought that this dessert was Middle Eastern because i have had similar in Turkey and Tunisia. After researching this dessert i found that its roots lay in Africa. Whether or not this is true, who knows for sure? My version makes it that little bit extra special though. 🙂
For the custard
- 8 tbsp cornflour (rounded not heaped)
- 10 tbsp of sugar
- 900 ml of full cream milk
- 200 single cream
- 3 tbsp orange flower water (or 4 tsp orange extract)
- grated rind of 2 oranges
- 50 g sliced blanched almonds
For the base
- 200g ginger nut biscuits (crushed)
- 125 g softened butter
- 1/2 tsp orange extract .
- 2 tbsp toasted coconut
- Line an 11 x 7 x 2 inches or 8 x 8 x 2 inches dish with greasproof paper.
- At least half an hour before making your dessert prepare your crumb base.
- Crush your biscuits until they resemble breadcrumbs,add the melted butter and orange extract and empty them onto the greasproom,leveling off and covering all the dish. I used the back of a glass to tap down and flatten evenly.
- Using a large bowl combine the flour and sugar with a little of the milk,enough to make a smooth runny paste.
- Pour the remaining milk into a saucepan and put on medium heat to boil.When boiled take it off the heat. Add some of the hot milk to the cornflour mixture and stir. Quickly add this to the pan of hot milk with the single cream stir vigorously and return to the heat on a low to medium. Add the flaked almonds, orange rind and orange flower water/extract, stirring constantly.
- When the mixture is thick enough to stick to the back of a spoon take it off the heat and pour immediately onto your crumb base. Shake the tin to level it off and sprinkle the toasted coconut on the top. Leave to rest in a cold place for a few hours before serving.
- tip: Toast your coconut in a small pan on a very low heat, tossing them in the pan to get an even colour. when you can smell the coconut and there is some sign of browning take them off the heat immediately as they continue to brown for a couple of minutes longer and ruin. Transfer the to a cold bowl to help stop the process.