Making Baklava All the Time!!!

baklavaIt’s been an emotional spiritual week!  I’ve had amazing news and experiences mixed in with the usual amount of crazy stress and crisis situations that I have to cope with.  Gotta keep my knife sharp, because there truly never is a “dull” moment as cliché as that sounds.  So much change going on, and time seems to fly faster and faster!  I’m not sure if it’s just adults that feel that?  I think even the younger generation feels it – that time is flying, so maybe the world is just spinning faster?  Any astrophysicists here that know the answer to that?  Some of us just love being on the go-go-go all the time-time-time, but for me, I prefer some down time – a quiet low stimulus soothing morning or afternoon.  (Health Central, Two Critical External Triggers of Anxiety)  It’s my personal remedy for too much stress, both positive and negative.  It gets to a point that even the simplest activity such as clearing that ominous pile of laundry seems intimidating.  This is a good time to just reward myself with a bite of something I really like to eat or with doing something I love to do!  Seemingly unproductive it is, but not really.  It leaves me ready to take baby steps forward again.  Cooking, blogging, sleeping, vacuuming, putting stuff away, shopping, talking on the phone to my mom, sorting through mail and exercising are some of the mundane activities that restore my internal equilibrium.  (Web MD: Six Surprising Stress Fixes)  All of these get me ready to take my next plunge  into something big!!!

ground cloves and cinnamon

phyllo footballs with pat of butter

For some months now, I have wanted to make baklava for the first time.  Last Sunday my older son was home for the weekend, so I decided to dive in and make baklava!  He helped take some of the video footage when I needed both hands to do the making.  Baklava is just so delicious that it’s heavenly!  You bite into that crisp light phyllo – layers and layers of it filled with sweet nut filling soaked in an ambrosia of honey syrup with a hint of lemon, then you swoon in ecstasy until you are licking every last drop of phyllo bits in syrup.

baklava

There are so many varieties, shapes and forms of baklava that comes from Greek, Armenian, Turkish, Persian and other cultures.  I chose to use a recipe for Turkish baklava and added a few twists to it. (Chef in You, Turkish Baklava Recipe)  Also, I loved the idea of making baklava football triangles!  These are shaped just like the paper ones your kids play with flicking across the table at restaurants when they are bored.  It seemed cleaner, easier and perfect for an individual serving size, so I followed a video on how to make baklava footballs.  (video on folding baklava footballs).  Now, I have had baklava that tastes too heavy or processed, so I think I’ve come up with something here that will really make you happy!  Please don’t be afraid to try making it, because it is not as ominous and intimidating as it might seem.

Here is my 15-minute demo YouTube video on baklava! (4:45-8:45 shows you how to fold the phyllo into a baklava football..)

 

Here is my twist of the Turkish baklava recipe combined with the folded phyllo football version!  I like to call it, “Making Baklava All the Time!!!”  You can print the recipe for your files by clicking on the print button just below and to the right of the recipe title.  Happy making and eating! 😀

Making Baklava All the Time!!!

From Sweetkitchengirl: On the Cutting Edge | Desserts | Mediterranean or Greek

Baklava is a most heavenly Turkish delight!! It is a delicious dessert bite of sweet nut filling between layers of crispy flaky phyllo pastry soaked in an ambrosia of honey syrup with a hint of lemon.

08:00
01:00
07:00

20 servings

Ingredients

  • Filling:
  • 1 c. slivered almonds
  • 2 c. walnut halves
  • 1/4 c. superfine granulated sugar
  • 1/4 t. ground cloves
  • 2 t. ground cinnamon
  • 2 T. butter
  • Pastry Cover:
  • 12 oz. package phyllo dough (20 sheets)
  • 1 T. butter
  • Pam cooking spray (vegetable oil)
  • Pam butter flavored cooking spray
  • Syrup:
  • 2 c. water
  • 1 1/2 c. superfine sugar
  • 6 oz. organic honey
  • 2 1/2 T. lemon juice
  • 1 stick cinnamon

Directions

  1. Filling:
  2. Combine all dry ingredients for filling in a food processor and pulse until mixture is finely chopped. Pour into mixing bowl, add butter (melt butter for 30 seconds in the microwave first) and mix thoroughly with clean hands.
  3. Making Phyllo Footballs: (Watch my video)
  4. Unroll package of phyllo dough and cover with wax paper and moist dish cloth. Take one sheet phyllo, place horizontally on saran wrap counter surface, spray entire sheet with Pam, fold top 1/3 over, spray with Pam, fold bottom 1/3 up and over, spray it with Pam, start folding triangle once, then twice; open up the phyllo pocket, fill with 2 heaping T. of sweet nut filling, fold thrice; keep folding until you have a phyllo football. Place them all on a cookie sheet sprayed with butter flavor Pam cooking spray, place in preheated oven (350 degrees F.), cover with aluminum foil, and bake for no longer than 35 minutes. Check to make sure it’s golden brown. Remove and cool.
  5. Syrup:
  6. Add all syrup ingredients to a saucepan, stir, heat to a gentle boil, simmer on low for 20 minutes stirring frequently. Take out the cinnamon stick and pour the entire syrup mixture evenly over the baklava footballs. Cover and store in fridge for six hours to let the footballs absorb most all the syrup.
  7. Garnish with chopped pistachios if you wish, cut baklava football triangles in half and serve drizzled with more of the ambrosia syrup.

Tips

  • Watch the syrup, so it doesn’t boil over. Work fast folding as the phyllo sheets dry out quickly. Wait the entire six hours before you start eating your baklava!!

 

5 Comments

  • Vasantha Bala says:

    Very interesting to read this article and watch the video.Easy to follow instructions.Will try making Baklava soon,!!!

  • Glenn says:

    Receipt looks good, video a bit to long for me (no offence) I will try it, looks easy. Thanks

    • admin says:

      Thanks, Glenn! I sure hope you tried it. I’m still a beginner on making these videos. My son was home from college and took some of the footage. I love the feedback and am always looking to improve for the viewers. :)

  • AngieG9 says:

    This looks so good, I am going to have to make it. I am now following your blog also. I have to warn you though, that if you make me fat I’ll come at you with my own chef’s knife. I blog about funny things that happen to me, but don’t put recipes in because I don’t measure things, just a pinch of this and a glog of that, so nobody could make anything I fix. Actually I can never repeat a recipe exactly myself, but I’m sure going to make some baklava.

    • admin says:

      Angie, you just made my day! Come at me, girl, I can take it. 😀 I hope you make you some delicious baklava. Don’t get frustrated if you have trouble with the folding. Just watch that part of the video carefully..make a pocket, fill and fold, repeat. Also, be sure to keep the phyllo dough from drying out by putting the moist dish cloth over it. Wax paper under it. It’s so worth it, but expect company to help you finish eating it all!!

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