Thursday, December 9, 2010

Baklava

Many types of baclavaImage via WikipediaLast week when we visited the Mısır Çarşı, a couple of you commented on the Baklava and wanted to know if I make it, can I make it, etc...

Here's my recipe. It's not a "Turkish" recipe. I got it from a friend who's married to a Greek guy and she got it from a neighbor up in (I don't remember where) who was from Lebanon (I think.) Who knows where it originated anyway? It's popular all over the Middle East and Mediterranean.

Start with the Syrup:

2 cups Sugar
2 cups Water
3 Tablespoons Honey

Boiled and Reduced.  Add:

1 teaspoon Vanilla
Juice of`1 Lemon

Cool and Refrigerate. Always pour COLD syrup on the hot Baklava (or whatever else you're making.)

Filling:

3 1/2 cups of Walnuts
2 1/2 cups of Almonds
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
1 teaspoon Nutmeg

Mix it all together in the food processor until the nuts are ground pretty well. (Not too fine or it'll be paste!)

Melted Butter (1+ Sticks)
1 Package Phyllo

Butter the pan (I use a half sheet pan). Unroll the Phyllo and cover with a clean dishcloth. (The stuff dries out very quickly!) Then layer about 10 sheets of phyllo in the pan. (Always covering the unused phyllo with the cloth and thoroughly buttering between each layer). Layer of half of the nut mixture, then 10 more layers phyllo, the other half of the nuts, layer the rest of the phyllo. Cut into diagonal baklava shape BEFORE baking at 350 F for about 30 minutes, or until desired golden color develops.

Using some almonds cuts the oily nut factor of the walnuts, but you can use just walnuts if you like. Turkish Baklava is usually made with Pistachios, but the unsalted, shelled variety is expensive and not so readily available here. If I was making the pistachio kind, I'd omit the vanilla and cut the lemon in half. Alesa, who is very clearly a foodie, has even tasted one with peanuts. She advises us to pass on that one and find a more suitable way to waste a calorie! Baklava is also made in different shapes, rolls, etc... Basically, they all taste similar, depending on the filling of course.

The one rule of Baklava: Don't ask about the calories!
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11 comments:

Jessica Bell said...

I love Baklava. I always thought it was Greek. Anyhoo, wherever it's from it's DELISH!

A. Grey said...

I could LIVE off of Baklava! I've had a variety of 'types' of it from various countries and every single one of them has been heaven!

C. N. Nevets said...

So hungry... ... ... :)

Old Kitty said...

Wow. Oh I'm salivating!! Thanks for the recipe!!!!

Take care
x

Kim Busk said...

Thank you Carolyn!

Alesa Warcan said...

Gleep! I've been spotted!
Of course my blog's name "questing for food" might have been a give away. ; j
-
Sounds good... of course it does, it's baklava and baklava is always a success!
-
BTW, the syrup can also be used warm.... If you use hot syrup then the baklava needs to cool. Hot syrup/ cool baklava or cool syrup/hot baklava, either one is good.
This is important because it ensures optimal syrup absorption (and minimizes the "resting time" some recipes call for).
-
Oh, could you specify that the syrup goes on after the baking to your recipe? It might not be obvious to a person who has never made baklava before, or not used to cooking. : j

LTM said...

ew! Recipes. And helpful hints from you and Alesa! I'm feeling compelled to try~

but must finish reading first!!! :D <3

The Golden Eagle said...

They look very tasty! :)

Thanks for the recipe!

Madeleine said...

Looks yummy :O)

Clarissa Draper said...

I love this dessert. It's one of my favorite. Thank you so much for the recipe.
CD

Vicki Rocho said...

YUM! I've never tried making baklava...might have to give it a go sometime.

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