I started making baklava in about 1980 when I learned the technique from a Lebanese
co-worker (pronounces it Ba-lay-wa). I refined my recipe with Turkish, Greek and other
versions. I made a batch that someone said was like my Romanian great-grandmother’s. The
result is now my own pan-Mediterranean delicacy.
|Makes about 3-4 pounds (36 slices)
There are several shortcuts in this recipe. You
do not have to tell
anyone how easy it is. My last batch was 1 hour start to finish.
1 pkg. frozen Phyllo dough, defrosted according to label instructions
1 can Crisco butter-flavored spray or 3 sticks unsalted butter
2 cups chopped Walnuts
1 cup chopped Almonds
½ cup chopped Pistachios
1 tbsp Vanilla
5 tbsp Amaretto
1½ cups dark Honey (about 1 lb.)
1 tsp. Pomegranate paste §
1 Tbsp. Rose water §
2 tbsp whole Cloves
1 tbsp ground Cinnamon
1 cup granulated Sugar
1 tsp grated nutmeg
Large glass pan (10x16 is good)
- In a saucepan, add Honey, Sugar, Vanilla, Amaretto, pomegranate paste and cloves.
- Heat in a double-boiler stirring frequently.
Watch it because boil-overs are particularly messy.
- Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat, strain, and allow to cool.
- Mix all nuts together with remaining cup of Sugar.
(Either use butter-spray or brush with melted butter)
Your phyllo must be completely defrosted [follow package directions]
or it will be difficult to work with.
- Line your pan with parchment. Spray with Crisco.
- Unroll phyllo and lay flat. Lay slightly damp towel on it to prevent it
- Move first sheet to your work area. Generously brush with butter
- Lay the sheet into the pan.
- Repeat steps 3 & 4 at least 4 more times.
- Butter the top sheet. Spread about 1/3 of nut mixture on top. Press down.
Butter the top of the nuts before continuing.
- Repeat steps 4 through 6.
- Complete with 4 to 8 layers of phyllo.
- With straight edge and razor blade, score the top in your cutting
pattern. Diamonds are traditional.
- Pre-heat oven to 425°. Bake for about 50 minutes. (About 25 minutes if butter used).
Watch near the end to be sure it is not burning.
- Remove from oven and immediately pour honey mixture over.
- Allow to cool slightly and then slice. I have found that a pizza
cutter works extremely well, when completing the cuts started by the scoring.
Serve hot, cool, or at room temperature.
§ May be found in an International or
Middle Eastern market.
The dark areas are not burnt. I am a better baker than
photographer. Thought the batch turned out so pretty that I needed a picture.
More great recipes at http://food.barasch.com
Revised 21 Dec 2002