Whenever I tell someone that I love making Baklava, they look at me like I'm crazy. "Isn't that really hard?" they always say. No, just time consuming. But once you taste the results, you start dreaming of making it again. And as they say, practice makes perfect, as well as quicker!
This recipe comes from a cookbook called Dessert Cooking Class Cookbook that a friend of my mother's gave me for Christmas. I think she knew me all too well!
1 box (1 pound) phyllo dough, thawed if frozen
1 cup melted butter, cooled to room temp.
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 cups walnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup honey
In a greased 11 x 9 inch pan, using one half of the dough, layer one sheet of phyllo at a time, brushing each sheet with the melted butter. Fold over ends as necessary. Keep unused sheets covered with paper towels dampened with water to prevent drying.
Mix 1/4 cup of the sugar, cinnamon, and walnuts together. Sprinkle mixture evenly over the buttered phyllo in the pan. Layer the remaining phyllo, one sheet at a time, brushing with butter until all phyllo is used. Brush last layer with butter.
Cut baklava diagonally into squares, cutting completely through all layers. Bake in preheated oven at 375 degrees until crisp and golden, about 45 minutes.
Combine remaining 1/2 cup sugar, water, lemon juice and honey in a small saucepan. Cook and stir over low heat until sugar dissolves. Heat to boiling and pour over hot baklava. Let stand loosely covered 8 hours or overnight (if you can stop yourself from eating it all by then :)
“Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian; wine and tarragon make it French. Sour cream makes it Russian; lemon and cinnamon make it Greek. Soy sauce makes it Chinese; garlic makes it good."
-Alice May Brock
-Alice May Brock