Moroccan Almond Pastries

Moroccan Almond Pastries

Phyllo pastry is one of those ingredients that I always have tucked away in my freezer. You can transform just about any ingredient into a super impressive and moreish meal by layering it with lashings of butter and wrapping it up in the flaky pastry. These nutty pastries are inspired by a Moroccan favourite called m'hencha which means 'the serpent'. It's crispy coils hide a sweet orange-scented almond filling doused in a generous drizzling of honey. Replace the orange-blossom water with rose water and top with crystallized rose petals or rose syrup or swop out the almonds for ground pistachios for something special. Served with a simple glass of mint tea, it's an exotic teatime treat that will transport you to a bustling Middle Eastern market with platters piled high with flaky phyllo delicacies.



Combine the almonds, sugar and cinnamon.

Add the flower water, half of the butter and the egg yolks.

When combined chill for about 1 hour to firm.

Divide the almond mixture into eight portions.

Brush a phyllo sheet with butter and place another on top. (Cover the remaining sheets with a damp cloth to avoid them drying out).

Cut each sheet lengthwise into 3 long strips.

Place one portion of the almond mixture along a thin line along the one edge of the phyllo and roll it up, brushing the end with egg white to make it stick.

Roll the phyllo roll into a coil like a snake then arrange on a lined or greased baking sheet, making sure that the coils don't unravel.

Repeat with the remaining phyllo and almond mixture.

Brush the top with butter and bake at 190°C for 30 minutes or until golden.

Paint immediately with the warm honey.

Serve with mint tea, if desired.

TIP: This is a great opportunity to use up all the rough ground almonds leftover from making macarons!


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