Baklava Recipe

Looking for a life changing dessert that always stays the same? Check out this Baklava recipe to make the day!

Baklava-recipe-2-SunCakeMom

We, humans, don’t really like changes. Although all of human society, culture hence civilization based on the technological advancement of our species, most of our first reaction to something new is pushing back on it.

We like to cling to the known even though it’s not the best option out there because there are many options worse than that. If we go into the nitty gritty of human mind though, we are not that dismissive towards new things or ideas if the risk of failing them reduced to small enough increments.

If anyone has ever received a free product sample, free tasting, or free credits for a service, that was entry cost reduction in action. Plenty of techniques have been developed by marketing teams during the years that help companies lower the risk, customers associate with trying out new products.

When handed out free stuff, companies are lowering the product acquisition threshold by eliminating the risk associated with a purchase that fails to live up to its expectations.

When implementing changes in our life, using the same technique can move mountains. Of course, as mountains can’t be moved at once, we need to do some work with our life before we can achieve changes too.

Making changes in small increments but consistently can have far-reaching consequences that is key to holistic transformations. Once we step on the path of metamorphosis and open the gates for new ideas to enter, going a step further on our way will be easier.

Probably not as easy as it was for Baklava to incorporate sugar in its recipe but more parallel to the suffering of shelling a pound of nuts for a dessert that packs more punch in bite than some meals.

Baklava is coming from where Gyros, Shawarma and their forbearer the Doner kebab originated. Where once the great Ottoman Empire resided today’s Turkey took up residency, carrying on the culture and cuisine entrusted to its care.

The word “Baklava” meaning -similarly to the origin of the dessert- if not totally lost but lacks clarity. It may have meant simply to “pile up” as it does in Mongolian which is exactly what we do with Baklava when piling on the layers of Phyllo and ground nuts.

Some take the piling up a bit more seriously than others though. In Greece, Baklava is supposed to be made with thirty-three dough layers, referring to the years of Jesus’s life

Although Baklava is hundreds of years old dessert, there aren’t that many types of Baklava out there. Sure, all the Baklava loving countries have their nitty gritty of the layers and slight variation of the ingredients but otherwise all Baklava is layered phyllo dough with ground nuts sweetened traditionally with honey but nowadays of course with sugar.

Apparently, the simplicity of ingredients hasn’t left much wiggling room for Baklava to diversify into other domains. Of course, there are phyllo pastry filled vegetables like Spanakopita in Greece or various other ingredients like the filo variety of Apple strudel but those created their own names and we don’t call them poppy seed, cottage cheese or apple Baklava.

This plainness and probably some political shuffling let Baklava to be the first Turkish product to receive a protected designation from the European Commission elevating the dessert onto the same plane where Tarta de Santiago or Pizza resides and Tiramisu trying to climb.

Making Baklava at home is as easy as layering up some phyllo sheets with the ground nuts then sweetening it with a syrup of choice. As the dessert was originally developed with honey, skipping on sugar won’t cause much of an effort.

Depending on where we are on our sugar free journey, we may realize that walnuts and pistachios have some sweetness to them and they may not require much additional sweetener, if any.

In any case, Baklava will require some restrain or hours of fitness exercises, thanks to the exorbitant amount of calories nuts are able to pack. The good news is that such fats are healthy, as long as they don’t cause on our waistline visible change.

Baklava-recipe-3-SunCakeMom

 

Ingredients

Syrup

  • ¼ cup / 60g Water
  • ½ cup / 150g Honey
  • 1 tablespoon / 5g Orange extract
  • 1 piece / 50g Lemon’s juice
  • Optional
    • Cloves

Pastry

  • 1⅔ cup / 200g Pistachio
  • 1⅔ cup / 200g Walnut
  • 1 tablespoon / 2.5g Cinnamon
  • ¼ cup / 50g Honey (optional)
  • 1 lb / 400g Phyllo dough
  • 4 tablespoons / 50g Ghee or butter (or oil for dairy free) (Check out how to make: Ghee – Clarified Butter Recipe) (Value for nutritional purposes, we’ll need more to easily brush the dough

Kitchen equipment

  • 7½” x 12″ / 19cm x 30cm Casserole dish

How to make Baklava

Syrup

  1. Bring water, honey, orange extract and optional cloves to boil. Remove from heat then let it cool to room temperature.Honey-syrup-pot--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  2. Remove cloves if used then mix in lemon juice.Honey-syrup-pot--gp--2-SunCakeMom

Pastry

  1. Peel then grind pistachio and walnut. Both will take a while so buying peeled ones is a huge time saver. Also one can be substituted with the other just stick to the correct weight.Pistachio-walnut-whole-ground--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  2. Using a food processor, crush them. Don’t need to pulverize them, just give a couple of pulse that chops them up. Add cinnamon and if any optional honey is used add it now.Pistachio-walnut-whole-ground--gp--2-SunCakeMom
  3. Brush the bottom of baking dish with ghee or butter then place the first layer of phyllo dough in. Depending on the size of phyllo sheets and baking dish, we may need to cut the sheets to match the size of our baking dish.Grease-baking-casserole-dish-rectangle-brush--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  4. In our case, the baking dish is about half the size of the phyllo sheets so we can simply fold the dough in half. Of course, we need to brush ghee or butter between the folded layers, too.Filo-phyllo-pastry-sheet-brush-grease-butter-ghee-oil--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  5. There is no steadfast rule about the number of layers here. Use ⅓ of the filo sheets available for the first layer. Greeks like to make 33 layers in their Baklava which makes 11 sheets for each layer.Filo-phyllo-pastry-sheet-brush-grease-butter-ghee-oil--gp--3-SunCakeMom
  6. Spread half of the ground pistachio and walnut filling evenly at the top of the first layer.Baklava-recipe-Process-1-SunCakeMom
  7. Carry on with the second layer of phyllo, brushing between each and every layer. Don’t need to soak the dough with ghee or butter but only a thin coat of fat needed to keep the layers from sticking together.Baklava-recipe-Process-2-SunCakeMom
  8. Once we use up the second third of our phyllo sheets which makes so far 22 layers in the Greek way, spread the remaining half of the filling evenly on top of the second layer.Baklava-recipe-Process-3-SunCakeMom
  9. Continue with the third layer which will see us using the last third of our dough and reach 33 layers in the Greek way. Brush the top with ghee or butter then get the sharpest knife to cut the baklava up.Baklava-recipe-Process-4-SunCakeMom
  10.  Place the baklava into the middle rack of a 350°F / 180°C preheated oven until its top turns golden brown, about 30 – 40 minutes.Baklava-recipe-Process-5-SunCakeMom
  11. Once the top is golden and crispy, take the baklava out and immediately pour the honey lemonade syrup over it as evenly as possible. It will sizzle which is completely normal and desirable effect. Let it cool completely.Baklava-recipe-Process-6-SunCakeMom

Enjoy!

Baklava-recipe-1-SunCakeMom

F.A.Q.

What nationality is Baklava?

Baklava originates to the late Ottoman empire which culture and heritage is carried on by today’s Turkey.

Is Baklava Greek or Russian?

There are various nations making their own Baklava. The hallmarks of Greek Baklava is 33 layers of phyllo dough with walnut layers.

Is Baklava Arabic or Turkish?

Originally Baklava is pistachios based Turkish dessert but many nations made their own variations of it from Hungarian strudel to walnut filled Greek Baklava.

What is Greek Baklava made of?

Greek Baklava is made of various layers of phyllo dough filled with crushed walnuts and some sort of sweet syrup, most often made of sugar.

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Baklava Recipe

Looking for a life changing dessert that always stays the same? Check out this Baklava recipe to make the day!
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dairy free, Mediterranean, Sugar free recipe
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 25
Calories 205kcal
Author SunCakeMom

Equipment

  • 7½" x 12" / 19cm x 30cm Casserole dish

Ingredients

Syrup
  • ¼ cup Water
  • ½ cup Honey
  • 1 tablespoon Orange extract
  • 1 piece Lemon's juice
  • Optional
  • Cloves
Pastry
  • 1⅔ cup Pistachio
  • 1⅔ cup Walnut
  • 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
  • ¼ cup Honey optional
  • 1 lb Phyllo dough
  • 4 tablespoons Ghee or butter (or cooking oil for dairy free) Check out how to make: Ghee - Clarified Butter Recipe (Value for nutritional purposes, we'll need more to easily brush the dough

Instructions

Syrup

  • Bring water, honey, orange extract and optional cloves to boil. Remove from heat then let it cool to room temperature.
    Honey-syrup-pot--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  • Remove cloves if used then mix in lemon juice.
    Honey-syrup-pot--gp--2-SunCakeMom

Pastry

  • Peel then grind pistachio and walnut. Both will take a while so buying peeled ones is a huge time saver. Also one can be substituted with the other just stick to the correct weight.
    Pistachio-walnut-whole-ground--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  • Using a food processor, crush them. Don't need to pulverize them, just give a couple of pulse that chops them up. Add cinnamon and if any optional honey is used add it now.
    Pistachio-walnut-whole-ground--gp--2-SunCakeMom
  • Brush the bottom of baking dish with ghee or butter then place the first layer of phyllo dough in. Depending on the size of phyllo sheets and baking dish, we may need to cut the sheets to match the size of our baking dish.
    Grease-baking-casserole-dish-rectangle-brush--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  • In our case, the baking dish is about half the size of the phyllo sheets so we can simply fold the dough in half. Of course, we need to brush ghee or butter between the folded layers, too.
    Filo-phyllo-pastry-sheet-brush-grease-butter-ghee-oil--gp--1-SunCakeMom
  • There is no steadfast rule about the number of layers here. Use ⅓ of the filo sheets available for the first layer. Greeks like to make 33 layers in their Baklava which makes 11 sheets for each layer.
    Filo-phyllo-pastry-sheet-brush-grease-butter-ghee-oil--gp--3-SunCakeMom
  • Spread half of the ground pistachio and walnut filling evenly at the top of the first layer.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-1-SunCakeMom
  • Carry on with the second layer of phyllo, brushing between each and every layer. Don't need to soak the dough with ghee or butter but only a thin coat of fat needed to keep the layers from sticking together.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-2-SunCakeMom
  • Once we use up the second third of our phyllo sheets which makes so far 22 layers in the Greek way, spread the remaining half of the filling evenly on top of the second layer.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-3-SunCakeMom
  • Continue with the third layer which will see us using the last third of our dough and reach 33 layers in the Greek way. Brush the top with ghee or butter then get the sharpest knife to cut the baklava up.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-4-SunCakeMom
  • Place the baklava into the middle rack of a 350°F / 180°C preheated oven until its top turns golden brown, about 30 - 40 minutes.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-5-SunCakeMom
  • Once the top is golden and crispy, take the baklava out and immediately pour the honey lemonade syrup over it as evenly as possible. It will sizzle which is completely normal and desirable effect. Let it cool completely.
    Baklava-recipe-Process-6-SunCakeMom

Notes

Enjoy!

Nutrition (per serving)

Calories: 205kcal (10%) | Carbohydrates: 22g (7%) | Protein: 4g (8%) | Fat: 12g (18%) | Saturated Fat: 3g (19%) | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 6mg (2%) | Sodium: 89mg (4%) | Potassium: 145mg (4%) | Fiber: 2g (8%) | Sugar: 9g (10%) | Vitamin A: 37IU (1%) | Vitamin C: 3mg (4%) | Calcium: 23mg (2%) | Iron: 1mg (6%)

Pin now, Enjoy later!

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