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Pastry

Recipe: Appetizing Baklava

Baklava. CUT the baklava after assembly and before cooking, and top with butter to make everything smooth and "pretty". Put the cooled sauce on as soon as you pull the baklava out of the oven. It tastes like the baklava I buy in the Greek stores downtown and a LOT cheaper per piece.

Baklava Cut a diagonal diamond pattern in the baklava using a very sharp knife. Pour honey mixture over hot baklava. A sweet, crisp, buttery and crunchy good treat! You can have Baklava using 15 ingredients and 14 steps. Here is how you achieve that.

Ingredients of Baklava

  1. It’s 6 oz of shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped.
  2. It’s 6 oz of walnuts, coarsely chopped.
  3. It’s 6 oz of hazelnuts, coarsely chopped.
  4. You need 1/4 cup of sugar.
  5. Prepare 2 tbsp of ground cinnamon.
  6. You need large pinch of of ground cloves.
  7. You need 16 of package phyllo dough, thawed.
  8. Prepare 18 tbsp of unsalted butter, melted.
  9. Prepare of honey syrup.
  10. Prepare 3/4 cup of sugar.
  11. You need 1 cup of cold water.
  12. It’s 1 cup of honey.
  13. It’s 1 tbsp of orange extract.
  14. Prepare 5 of whole cloves.
  15. It’s 1 of lemon.

Garnish baklava with finely chopped nuts or drizzle with melted chocolate. Whereas it is most common to find baklava made entirely with walnuts here in Greece, I prefer a combination with almonds. This heavenly Baklava combines honey-soaked layers of flaky phyllo pastry with spiced walnuts. It's a great make-ahead dessert perfect for the holidays or special occasions.

Baklava instructions

  1. Set aside 3-4 tbsp of chopped pistachios for garnish. Combine the remaining chopped nuts in a mixing bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the sugar, cinnamon, and ground cloves. Stir to mix..
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F..
  3. Unroll phyllo and measure briefly against a 13 “x 9″ x 2” baking pan. Trim a little of the phyllo to better fit your baking dish..
  4. Now spread the phyllo sheet on top of a damp towel, and cover with a second damp towel. This will help keep the phyllo dough from breaking while you work to assemble the baklava..
  5. Lightly brush the baking dish with a bit of the melted butter. Take one sheet of phyllo and line the baking pan with it, fold in any excess. Brush the phyllo sheet with butter and gently press in the corners and sides of the baking pan..
  6. Lay another phyllo sheet on top, brush with butter, and press into the pan as you have done with the first sheet. Lay another sheet on top, brush with butter, and press into the pan as before. Continue layering and buttering each phyllo sheet until you have used up 1/3 of the phyllo package. Distribute half of the nut mixture evenly over the top sheet..
  7. Layer another 1/3 of the phyllo following the same process as before. Now distribute the remaining half of the nut mixture over the top layer..
  8. Layer the remaining phyllo sheets following the same process as before..
  9. If needed, trim off excess phyllo. Generously brush the very top layer of phyllo with butter..
  10. With a knife, cut diagonal lines, 1/2 inch deep, in the phyllo to make out 1 1/2 inch diamond pieces. Do not press the knife all the way down..
  11. Bake on a low rack for 45 mins to 1 hour, or until golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. IMPORTANT…Because ovens vary, be sure to check your baklava half way through baking..
  12. While the baklava is baking, make the honey syrup. Place the sugar and water in a saucepan and heat stove-top, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Add the honey, orange extract, and whole cloves; stir to mix. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and let simmer for about 25 minutes. Remove syrup from heat and let cool to lukewarm. Add lemon juice. Remove the whole cloves..
  13. When ready, remove the baklava from the oven and immediately pour the cooled honey syrup to cover the entire hot baklava. Let set to completely absorb the syrup..
  14. A few hours later, cut the baklava carefully through the earlier marked pieces. Serve with a garnish of chopped pistachios..

If I had to name some of the best desserts of all time, Baklava would be on the list for sure. Many ethnic festivals are held in my city throughout the year. One in May is the Greek Hellenic Festival. My family enjoys baklava—a traditional walnut strudel. The recipe uses phyllo dough, which is not difficult to work with.

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