It may be unneccesary to say much about baklava, it is so well known that most peopel can conjure up an image of it in seconds. The only thing we must say is: do not be afraid of making it at home, it really is an easy dessert to make, serve individual pieces with strong (Turkish) sweet coffee and dried apricots!
1 package fillo sheets
1 lb butter
1 lb walnuts, chopped
3 cup sugar, white granulated
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground cinnamon or 1/4 tsp ground and 1 stick cinnamon
- Chop walnuts to medium fine
- Melt butter
Preheat oven to 350°F
1. Mix walnuts with 1 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves.
2. Cut the phyllo in half so that each sheet fits the bottom of the baking pan.
3. Generously butter the bottom and sides of the baking pan and place the phyllo, one sheet at a time, in the baking pan. Buter each sheet of phyllo as it is placed in the pan. Every 6 to 8 sheets of fillo spread a layer of walnut mix.
4. Continue layering phyllo sheets and walnuts until phyllo is finished. Pour any remaining butter over top of the baklava.
*The secret to good flaky baklava is to have each sheet of pastry well buttered so that the sheets do not stick together.
5. With a sharp knife, cut the baklava diagonally to form diamond shaped pieces.
6. Bake the baklava for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown on top. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
For the syrup (make while Baklava is baking):
1. Mix one cup water, two cups sugar, 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves and either 3/4 teaspoons cinnamon or the cinnamon stick in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes.
2. Pour the boiling syrup over the cool baklava and allow to cool completely again.