Nightingale nests

Nightingale nests

By
From
Turquoise
Makes
6
Photographer
Lisa Cohen and William Meppem

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
2/3 cup walnuts
1/2 cup unsalted pistachios, shelled
2 tablespoons caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 sheets filo pastry
unsalted butter, melted

Sugar syrup

Quantity Ingredient
200g caster sugar
200ml water
1 stick cinnamon
1/2 lemon, peeled and juiced

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Grease a baking tray.
  2. To make the syrup, combine the sugar, water, cinnamon stick and lemon peel in a heavy-based saucepan and heat gently, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, then add the lemon juice and set aside to cool.
  3. Pulse the nuts, sugar and cinnamon to fine crumbs in a food processor.
  4. To make the nightingale nests, work with one sheet of filo at a time and keep the rest covered with a damp tea towel. Place a sheet of pastry on your work surface and brush with a little melted butter. Fold the filo sheet in half, bringing the short sides together. Swivel the pastry rectangle so a short side is facing you. Brush with a little more butter and scatter on a generous amount of the nut mixture.
  5. Lie a long metal skewer or a chopstick across the end of the filo rectangle facing you and roll the pastry around it and away from you to create a tight log. Brush the pastry log with melted butter. With the skewer still in place, gently push both ends of the pastry log inwards, wrinkling up the pastry, until the log is around 12 cm long. Gently pull out the skewer and coil the wrinkled log into a ‘nest’ shape. Use a spatula to lift it onto the prepared baking sheet. Continue working with the remaining filo sheets and nut mixture until you have six neat bird’s nests – you should still have some nut mixture left.
  6. Brush the nests with butter and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  7. Shortly before the end of the cooking time, bring the syrup to a boil. Remove the pastry nests from the oven and stand the baking tray on a high heat on your stove top. Cook for a minute, turning continuously (this helps make the bottoms of the pastry good and crisp). After a minute pour on the boiling syrup, then immediately remove the tray from the heat. Leave the pastries in the tray to soak up the syrup as they cool.
  8. When ready to eat, fill the middle of the nests with more of the nut mixture and serve.
Tags:
Turquoise
Malouf
Greg
Lucy
Turkish
Turkey
Mediterranean
European
Middle Eastern
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