Baklava

Baklava

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery
Makes
30

A superb sweet pastry, typical of the luscious pastries of Greece and the Middle East.

Baklava

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
20 sheets filo pastry
185g butter, melted
185g walnuts, finely chopped
115g almonds, finely chopped
55g caster sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

Syrup

Quantity Ingredient
440g sugar
500ml water
2 cloves
1 x 8 cm stick cinnamon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
thin strip lemon peel
2 tablespoons honey

Method

  1. Unwrap filo pastry, spread flat on a dish towel and cover with a dry dish towel then a damp one to stop drying out while assembling baklava. Place one sheet of filo in a buttered 33 × 23 × 5 cm baking dish, brush all over with melted butter and place another sheet on top. Continue adding sheets of filo, buttering in between, until 9 sheets are used.
  2. Mix nuts with sugar and spices and sprinkle half over filo. Add 2 more sheets of filo, brushing each with butter. Top with remaining nuts and then 9 more sheets of buttered filo. Trim edges and brush top layer with butter.
  3. With a sharp knife, cut through top few sheets of filo to make a diamond pattern. Sprinkle a little water over surface to keep pastry flat while baking, and bake in centre of a preheated moderately slow oven for 30 minutes. Move baklava to a shelf placed above centre and bake for a further 30 minutes. If pastry is browning too much, cover with foil, but do not reduce cooking time.
  4. To make syrup, place all the ingredients in a saucepan and stir over high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil and boil over moderate heat for 10 minutes. Strain and cool before using. Spoon syrup over hot baklava as soon as it comes from the oven. Allow to cool, and cut into diamonds to serve.
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