Baklava is so honey-soaked in Greece that you have to use a fork. If you try to eat it with your hands, you’re bound to drip honey down your chin, your neck, your shirt, and maybe even to your shoes. While baklava can sometimes be a drier pastry, that’s not what you’re getting here. The phyllo is firm and crispy from layering with butter, the nuts are crunchy and sprinkled with cinnamon and clove, and the honey syrup is plentiful and sweet.
If you’re up for a real challenge, make the phyllo yourself! I don’t have the ability to do that because I came to Greece with incredibly limited baking supplies. More on that next week!
This is a traditional Greek baklava made with a mix of pistachios, walnuts, and almonds and covered with a honey syrup.
- 30 sheets phyllo dough thawed and cut to fit pan
- 84 grams walnuts chopped
- 84 grams almonds chopped
- 84 grams pistachios chopped
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 150 grams butter melted
- 300 grams sugar
- 200 grams water
- 50 grams honey
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 7x11-inch pan
The night before baking, thaw phyllo dough in the refrigerator. Do not thaw on the counter. This will cause the sheets to become gummy and much harder to handle.
Preheat oven to 325 F.
Combine chopped nuts with cinnamon and clove in a small bowl. Set aside.
Thoroughly butter the bottom and sides of the pan. Line a single sheet of phyllo along the bottom of the pan, careful not to rip the phyllo. Sprinkle, do not brush, butter across the entire sheet. Be generous. Repeat until there are 10 sheets lining the bottom of the pan.
Once the base is built, cover the phyllo with nuts. Continue layering, one phyllo sheet at a time, then generously sprinkling each sheet with butter until all sheets are used.
Cool in refrigerator for 15 minutes to make baklava easier to cut. Once time has elapsed, cut into even squares.
Place in oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until baklava is golden brown on top and the layers look crispy.
While the baklava is baking, make the honey syrup. Combine sugar, water, honey, and cinnamon sticks in a deep pan or a pot. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and boil until the sugar has dissolved. Remove immediately from heat. The syrup should be cool when poured over the baklava.
After removing the baklava from the oven, pour cool syrup over it while still hot. Best served after several hours, when the syrup has seeped through all the layers.
I am baking in a tiny, tiny oven now, so this recipe is meant for a 7x11-inch pan. Feel free to double the recipe for a 9x13.