Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Baklava is one of the sweets which deserves to be categorized under, "sinful delights". This sure is for someone who needs a lift of spirits! Its fairly easy to make and your family and friends will be pleasantly surprised that you actually managed to make Baklava at home!
Baklava is originally from Turkey and is pronounced as "Baak-lava" or "Baak-leva". But its most popular as being referred to as Baaklava.
Phyllo dough (look for it in the frozen food section in the grocery store. thaw it for 30 mins)
Clarified butter (or unsalted butter)- 1/2 cup
shredded walnuts - 1 cup
Shredded almonds-1/4 cup
finely grounded Cinnamon- 1 tsp
Sugar syrup ingredients:
vanilla extract-1 tsp
1. Mix walnuts, almonds and cinnamon and keep aside.
2. Take a 9"/13" baking tray and grease it with butter on bottom and sides.
3. Open the phyllo dough and cut the sheets in such a way that it fits the tray (usually if you cut into half that should fit 9/13 tray).
4. Keep one half aside and store the rest of the dough in the freezer.
5. Take 2 sheets of dough and grease it with butter. (make sure that you work your way around super quick because phyllo gets dried real fast. If you think you cannot do faster then cover the rest of the dough with wet cloth)
6. Place these two sheets in the baking tray. Repeat this process until you finish 8 sheets.
7. Then sprinkle 3 table spoons of nuts (from step 1).
8. Then place 2 more greased sheets of phyllo followed by nuts. Repeat until you finish the nuts.
9. The top layer of phyllo should be at least 6 layers.
10. At this point, preheat the oven to 350 F or 180 C.
11. Gently cut the dough with a very sharp knife all the way till you hit the bottom(any shape you like). (this is difficult, so cut the dough very carefully, I usually choose square or diamond).
12. When the oven is ready bake it for 30 mins. After 30 mins take it out and see if the top layer has turned light golden brown. If not, then bake for another 10 mins. make sure you keep an eye on this after 30 mins because phyllo gets burnt fast.
while Baklava is baking, boil water and sugar until sugar completely dissolves. Then add honey and simmer for 20 mins. 3 mins before you turn the gas off, add Vanilla extract. The consistency would be slightly thick (something like gulab jamoon syrup).
Finally when Baklava has turned golden color, remove it from the oven and pour the sugar syrup all over it immediately. Yes, drench it completely and evenly. You will hear that 'chhhhhsssss' sound....but that's fine. That's it! You will need to let it cool down at least for 2 hours before you serve it because its going to be really hot and also the syrup needs to be absorbed. Leave it uncovered while its cooling down. When it cools down, gently take the pieces out.
I gave so many steps so that it is easier to understand. Its really not difficult. try it and let me know how it came!