Baklava with Cardamom and Rosewater

baklava 1

We are back from our incredible Grecian honeymoon.  You’d think I’d be sick of Greek food but it’s all I want!

baklava 3

Greek and Persian food are so similar.  People usually think of Greek food when they hear baklava but Iranians claim baklava as theirs too. I say the more people making baklava the better.

baklava 5

Pre-oven

This recipe is a bit of a Greek/Persian hybrid baklava.  If you want this to be truly Greek leave out the cardamom and rosewater (I don’t recommend this- these ingredients make the dish so special!).

baklava 2

Post-oven Pre-syrup

You could use almonds in place of walnuts just make sure you weigh the nuts.  I love this dish because it’s super simple and keeps well for several days- and the flavors are amazing!

baklava 4

You’ll need:

  • 8 ounces walnuts
  • 8 ounces shelled pistachios plus a few tablespoons extra for garnish
  • 0.25 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2-3 teaspoons ground cardamom (optional)
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 package frozen phyllo sheets, thawed in the fridge overnight

For Syrup

  • 0.75 cup sugar
  • 0.75 cup water
  • 0.75 cup honey
  • 1-2 tablespoons rose water (optional)

To Make:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Pulse walnuts, pistachios, cinnamon and cardamom in a food processor a few times until chopped up but not a powder.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat.  Brush the inside of a 9X12X2 inch baking pan with butter.
  3. Set phyllo on counter and coverwith a damp towel.  Every time you remove a sheet of phyllo you will replace the towel.
  4. Gently take one sheet of phyllo and place in bottom of baking dish… you can trim the edges with scissors if too big or just smoosh/fold to make fit.  Brush the top with butter.  Layer on another sheet of phyllo.  Repeat this process until you have 7 sheets total.
  5. Sprinkle half the nuts over the phyllo in an even layer.  Place a sheet of phyllo on top and brush with butter.  Repeat until you’ve done four total for this layer.
  6. Sprinkle with the remaining nuts.  Repeat the butter/phyllo process with 7 sheets in this layer.
  7. Slowly, with a very sharp knife, cut the baklava on a diagonal into desired size pieces.  Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes.
  8. Remove baklava from oven and cool completely.  Meanwhile make syrup: combine honey, sugar, water and rosewater in a saucepan over high heat.  Boil for ten minutes (it shouldn’t be super thick).  While syrup is boiling recut baklava.
  9. Pour syrup (when it’s warm but not boiling hot) over cooled baklava.  If for any reason you feel like the syrup was too thick or not enough you can make more and pour over.  Cover baklava and let sit for a few hours or overnight.  Keeps, covered, for several days at room temperature.

Inspired by TheKitchn

 

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