Baklava is a rich, buttery sweet pastry consisting of many layers of crunchy phyllo, filled with chopped nuts and sweetened with an aromatic syrup.
It is absolutely delicious!
*150 g / 5.3 oz shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
*200 g / 7 oz walnuts, coarsely chopped
*150 g / 5.3 oz hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
*2 cups chocolate chips ( optional )
*¼ cup sugar
*2 tbsp ground cinnamon
*1/3 tsp ground cloves
*16-oz package phyllo dough, thawed
*18 tbsp sheep butter, melted
*¾ cup sugar
*1 cup water
*1 cup honey
*1 tbsp orange extract
*5 whole cloves
+juice of 1 lemon
Combine chopped nuts and chocolate chips in a mixing bowl. Add ¼ cup of the sugar, cinnamon, and ground cloves. Stir to mix.
Preheat the oven to 160 C – 350 F.
Unroll phyllo and measure briefly against a 33’~22’cm / 13’~9 inch. baking pan.
Lightly brush the baking dish with melted butter. Take one sheet of phyllo and line the baking pan with it, fold in any excess. Brush the phyllo sheet with butter and gently press in the corners and sides of the baking pan.
Lay another phyllo sheet on top, brush with butter, and press into the pan as you have done with the first sheet. Lay another sheet on top, brush with butter, and press into the pan as before.
Continue layering and buttering each phyllo sheet until you have used up ⅓ of the phyllo package. Distribute half of the nut mixture evenly over the top sheet.
Layer another ⅓ of the phyllo following the same process as before. Now distribute the remaining half of the nut mixture over the top layer.
Layer the remaining phyllo sheets following the same process as before.
Generously brush the top layer of phyllo with butter.
With a knife, cut diagonal lines, in the phyllo to make out diamond pieces. ( Do not press the knife all the way down ).
Bake on a low rack for 45 mins to 1 hour, or until golden brown.
While the baklava is baking, make the syrup.
Place the sugar and water in a saucepan and heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Add the honey, orange extract, and whole cloves; stir to mix.
Bring to a boil, then lower heat and let simmer for about 25 minutes.
Remove syrup from heat and let cool to lukewarm. Add lemon juice.
Remove the whole cloves.
When baklava is ready, pour the cooled honey syrup to cover the entire hot baklava. Let set to completely absorb the syrup.
A few hours later, cut the baklava carefully through the earlier marked pieces.
Top with chopped nuts or chocolate sauce and serve.