A taste of Greece,
served best with friends, with tea, with coffee—
ow! What a treat with a cup of coffee or some hot tea! You will love this authentic Greek dish. It is the best baklava I have ever eaten. There is a little secret to why this particular baklava is so good— it is the woman from whom the recipe comes. Her name is Harriet, and she is a person who always turns out quality in everything she does.
Harriet and I worked together in a bank years ago, and we have been close friends ever since that time. Above all else about Harriet, I treasure her as my true friend. Nearly 30 years past I went thought a very painful time in my life. Harriet listened with a kind and understanding heart. She never judged, but always remained as my faithful friend. Thank you, Harriet for your good friendship both then and now.
Here is how to make Harriet’s baklava and maybe a chance to share some special moments with a true friend as well. There are two parts to baklava: the syrup and the layers.
Ingredients for Syrup
1 cup honey
2 cups water
2 cups sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
Combine syrup ingredients in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. Strain and allow to cool.
Ingredients for Layers
1 pound unsalted butter, melted
1 pound filo dough (Follow package directions so that the filo will not dry out)
1 1/2 pounds walnuts or almonds
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup bread crumbs
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
whole cloves (for the center of each piece of baklava)
Coarsely grind walnuts and mix with sugar, bread crumbs, cinnamon, and allspice. Butter each of 6 sheets of filo and butter the baking pan (11 1/2 x 15 1/2 x 3 inches). Place one filo sheet into the pan, then spread some of the nut filling over the filo sheet. Repeat, using all of the nut filling for all 6 filo sheets. Then, top with six more buttered filo sheets.
Cut into diamond (or triangle) shapes and insert a whole cove into the center of each diamond. Then sprinkle with a little water; just dip your hand in water and sprinkle. Bake in a 350º oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until golden brown. Pour cool syrup over and allow 2 hours before serving.
Opa! Opa! Opa!
Come and be with friends!