Easy and Crisp Baklava


For the Honey Syrup

¾ cup sugar

1 cup cold water

1 cup honey

1 tbsp orange extract (optional)

5 whole cloves

1 lemon, juice

For the Baklava

6 Oz. shelled Pistachios, coarsely chopped

6 Oz Pecans or Walnuts, coarsely chopped

6 Oz Hazelnuts, coarsely chopped

¼ cup sugar

1 to 2 tbsp cinnamon

large pinch of ground cloves

One 16 Oz. package phyllo dough, thawed

1 ½ to 2 sticks of unsalted butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 350.

For the Honey Syrup

Put sugar and water in a saucepan and heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved.

Add honey, orange extract and whole cloves, then stir.

Bring to a boil, then lower heat and let simmer for 25 minutes.

Remove syrup from heat and let cool to lukewarm.

Add lemon juice, then remove cloves.

Make the Nut Mixture

In a food processor place pistachios, pecans or walnuts and hazelnuts.

Pulse to chop, then transfer to a mixing bowl, then add sugar, cinnamon and ground cloves and stir to combine.

Prepare the Phyllo Pastry

Unroll the thawed phyllo pastry and place the sheets in between two clean kitchen towels.

This will help keep the phyllo from breaking.

To Assemble the Baklava

Prepare a 9” x 13” x 2” baking pan, brush with some melted butter.

Take one sheet of phyllo and place it in the pan, then brush the top sheet with melted butter.

Repeat until you use up ⅓ of the phyllo pastry, each layer brushed with melted butter.

Then, distribute ½ of the nut mixture evenly over the top layer of phyllo.

Continue assembling, one sheet of phyllo pastry at a time using another ⅓ of the phyllo.

Again, brush each layer with melted butter.

Distribute the remaining ½ of the nut mixture evenly over the top layer of phyllo.

Finish the remaining ⅓ of the phyllo pastry, laying one folded sheet at a time and brushing each layer with melted butter.

Then brush the top sheet of phyllo with butter.

Using a sharp knife, cut the pastry into 24 diamond shaped pieces.

Place the baking dish on the middle rack of your heated oven.

Bake anywhere from 35 to 45 minutes or until the top of the baklava turns golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

As soon as you remove the baklava from the oven, pour the cooled syrup all over the hot baklava.

Allow baklava to sit for at least 1 hour.

Cut through the earlier marked pieces, then serve with a garnish of chopped pistachios, Enjoy!
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