Spiced Apple Baklava is a cure for my homesickness. An attempted cure, at least. I won’t complain about my good luck and privilege to be spending this time in Greece (Croatia next week!). I will say I miss time with my family and I definitely miss baking my fall favorites. This recipe for baklava takes some of my new favorite baklava tricks and marries them with an American classic, apple pie. This recipe is easy and full of warm, fall spices.
Spiced Apple Baklava
Crispy phyllo layers filled with warm, spiced apple filling, walnuts, and almonds. This baklava recipe combines the classic Greek dessert with an American favorite, apple pie.
Spiced Apple Filling
- 2 large red apples peeled and diced
- 1 large green apple peeled and diced
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 orange
- 1/2 lemon
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons allspice
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- 40 grams walnuts chopped
- 40 grams almonds chopped
- 150 grams butter
- 30 sheets phyllo dough thawed and cut to fit pan
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1/2 lemon sliced
- 300 grams sugar
- 200 grams water
- 50 grams honey
Combine diced apples, spices, juice from 1/2 orange and 1/2 lemon, nuts, and honey in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir to combine. Cook until mixture begins to bubble and apples have just begun to soften, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat.
While apple filling cooks, melt butter for between phyllo layers. Grease the bottom and sides of a 7x11-inch pan and add the first sheet of phyllo to the bottom of the pan. Generously sprinkle (do not brush) butter on top of the phyllo, then stack a second sheet of phyllo. Sprinkle with butter. Repeat 8x, or until there are 10 phyllo sheets lining the bottom of the pan.
Carefully pour the apple filling on top of the phyllo in the pan. Cover the apple filling with one sheet of phyllo, sprinkle with butter, and continue layering with remaining sheets. Generously sprinkle each layer of phyllo with butter; the butter creates the crispy layers, so don't be stingy.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Place baklava in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to cool. Once cool, remove from refrigerator and cut into 20 even squares.
Bake for 35 - 40 minutes, until top of baklava is crispy.
While the baklava is in the oven, prepare the honey syrup. Add sugar, water, honey, lemon slices, and cinnamon sticks to a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar has dissolved. Bring to boil and boil for 5 minutes. Remove immediately from heat and pour into a bowl. Refrigerate or place in a cool location to cool. Syrup should be cool when added to baklava.
When baklava is finished, remove from oven and immediately pour honey syrup evenly over the squares. Rest for 1 hour before serving.
Always thaw phyllo dough in the refrigerator, not on the counter. Thawing on the counter will make your phyllo gummy.
Once phyllo is open and exposed to air, work quickly. It begins to harden very fast. If it's taking a bit longer, a damp paper towel or kitchen towel over the phyllo will help keep it workable.