I decided to try something new for a change. I have been wanting to play around with warka leaves for sometime now. Warka leaves are a very thin pastry, thinner than phyllo which are used to make Maghrebi savoury and sweet pastries, such as beestiya and cigars. For an good explanation of warka and Algerian cuisine, see my friend, Chef Zadi’s blog.
I also made some clove-cinnamon ice cream. I really love the flavour of cloves and thought it would be an excellent compliment to the peach briwatt. It was. As usual, I doubled the amount of cloves and used about 9 cinnamon sticks. My husband loved the strong clove flavour, but you might want to follow the recipe the first time unless you are a spice junkie like me.
2 cups whole milk
2 cups whipping cream
1 cup sugar
6 whole cinnamon sticks
16 whole cloves, slightly crushed
8 large egg yolks
Combine milk, cream, 1/2 cup sugar, cinnamon and cloves in heavy medium saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat. Cover; steep 1 hour. Then, strain the milk mixture and put back in a clean saucepan.
Whisk yolks and 1/2 cup sugar in bowl until well blended. Bring milk mixture to simmer. Gradually whisk hot milk mixture into yolk mixture; return to same pan. Stir over medium-low heat until custard thickens and leaves path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across (do not boil). Strain into another medium bowl; chill uncovered until cold, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours.
Process chilled custard in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer ice cream to container; cover and freeze. (Can be prepared 3 days ahead. Keep frozen.)
My husband thought the the peach flavour was a bit too subtle for the ice cream, but I liked it. You can use any fruit of your choice, but if you use a harder fruit, such as apple, you might want to sautée them before placing them in the pastry.
2 warka leaves (also known as brik, brick, dioul and malsouqa)
1 peach, peeled, halved and cut into thin slices
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon ras al hanout or cinnamon
50 g butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
Thaw out two warka leaves and cover them until ready to use. Place one warka leave on a flat surface and place the slices of one half of the peach onto the bottom half of the warka leaf. Sprinkle some sliced almonds, 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of ras al hanout or cinnamon on the peaches. Dot with a pat of butter.
Brush water on the edges of the warka and fold the bottom edge over the peaches and then the sides. The, roll the parcel up until you have a burrito or blintz shape.
Melt the butter and the olive oil in a medium heat pan and fry the parcels until lightly brown on either side. Serve warm with ice cream.