So this weekend is our friends 22nd birthday and she’s mentioned a few times that she loves baklava but it’s not that easy to find here. Having never made baklava we thought we would make some for her and it would be a great blog post to share with you.
Traditionally Baklava is made using a sweet pastry filled with chopped nuts and drenched in a sticky syrup. You may want to flavour your syrup for a more fragrant taste using rose water, however we have gone for lemon juice and a little bit of honey.
Making you own filo pastry is a long, painstaking task which is very fiddly – ain’t nobody got time for that. Shop bought is just as good (probably better), a lot easier and can also be kept in the freezer for your daily baklava needs.
We aren’t cheating, if the top chefs can do it, so can we!
As you can see, when we added the final layer of nuts we folded the excess filo around the edges on top of the nuts, this way there wasn’t too much floating about at the end.
- 100g unsalted pistachio nuts (unshelled)
- 100g walnuts
- 220g ready-made filo pastry
- 150g unsalted butter, melted
- 250g caster sugar
- 250ml water
- juice 1/2 lemon
- 1tbsp honey
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C
- Begin by chopping the nuts or pulsing in a food processor, you don't want the nuts to be too fine
- Depending on the size of your tin, you may want to trim your filo pastry, lay the pastry down on a clean dry surface and use your tin to measure the size of your sheets. We used a 10" sandwich tin, but you can use a square or rectangular one. Our filo pastry came with 12 sheets, so we decided 2 layers of 6 sheets plus the off cuts to create a layer between the nuts.
- Brush some melted butter over the baking dish and start layering the filo, applying butter in between each sheet. After 6 sheets, spread over half the chopped nuts, followed by the layers of off cuts & butter (we managed about 6 more layers here) repeat with the second half of the nuts and then the final 6 layers.
- Finish the top layer by tucking in or chopping any excess filo pastry plus another sheen of melted butter. Bake in the oven for 30 mins or until golden brown.
- Whilst the baklava is in the oven you want to prepare the syrup to allow time for it to cool. Put all the syrup ingredients in a heavy based sauce pan & allow to simmer for around 15mins until reduce by about a third, set aside.
- When the baklava is out the oven, looking golden & crispy spoon half the cooled syrup over the pastry, leave for 10 mins to soak in and repeat. Allow the baklava to completely cool before removing from the tin & serving.