Friday, June 19, 2009

Baklava -- Middle Eastern Style

I apologize for the lack of blogging in the last while; I know it's been quite some time since my last post. I hope to bring more posts to this blog on a regular basis, so I thought to come back with a fantastic baklava recipe!

This was always a staple in our home around the holidays. After watching my mother make this treat after all those years, I learned to make it myself.

The process of baklava isn't too difficult but it can be tedious and must be neat. You need to watch out that it doesn't become un-even, lumpy and unattractive.



  • 2 Packages Phyllo Pastry
  • 1 pound Unsalted Butter
  • 600 grams Walnut halves (coarsely ground)
  • 1 tbls. Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Ground Cardamom
  • 2 tbls. Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 4 cups Sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ tsp. Ground cardamom
  • 1 tbls. Lemon Juice
  • 3 tbls. Unsalted Pistachios, finely ground

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

  1. Place water and sugar into a large pot and mix well until sugar is dissolved
  2. Place on medium heat until syrup starts to thicken and come to a boil
  3. Once the syrup reaches a boil, add lemon juice and stir for 2-3 minutes
  4. Remove from heat and add cardamom, stir and leave to cool
  1. In a bowl, mix coarsely ground walnuts, sugar and cardamom
  2. Drizzle melted butter over mixture and incorporate so that the mixture binds together
  1. Thoroughly melt butter over low heat
  2. Line a large size cookie sheet (17”x14”) with a sheet of buttered parchment paper
  3. Take two sheets of phyllo pastry at a time, butter with a pastry brush and repeat until you have 1 ½ packages lining the bottom of the cookie sheet
  4. Evenly spread walnut filling over buttered phyllo pastry and firmly press down onto the filling
  5. Using the remaining ½ package of phyllo pastry repeat step three by buttering every two sheets, leaving the final top two sheets unbuttered
  6. Make sure the pastry is well fitted to the cookie sheet, if there is any overhang; trim off all excess
  7. Using a knife pre-cut into desired shapes (squares, diamonds, triangles, etc.)
  8. Place baklava in the bottom rack of the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until bottom is golden brown, whilst checking occasionally so that the pastry does not burn
  9. After the bottom has reached the golden brown stage, place the baklava on the top rack until the top layer reaches becomes golden brown
  10. Remove baklava from the oven and slowly pour 1-2 cups of cooled syrup over the entire slab of hot baklava (feel free to add more if you desire a sweeter baklava)
  11. Sprinkle finely ground pistachios on top and leave to cool for one hour
  12. Cut slices thoroughly and serve
Naho@Scrumptious Foods