December 6, 2012

Baklava from home-made Phyllo dough

As you can see, this is the very first post on my blog and I'm starting with a sweet treat. It's been sometime the idea of creating a blog haunting me. I've been taking snaps of all experimented recipes once they are set on the table for my family to relish upon. Saving all such snaps in my hard disk and looking at it makes me blush.That's the truth. Then thought why not jot down the recipe so I can refer later or at least my kid can find it useful at some point of time ; just now got a kick in my head. Not sure how long I'll have this craziness of posting the recipes and snaps.

My darling daughter Dyuti & loving hubby Sathyajith are my inspirations in experimenting new cuisines and desserts. Even very much open to give their opinions. Dyuti gives me helping hand in kitchen chores. Any ways Sathya is just the opposite; he neither enters nor helps me in the kitchen but loves to be a tester :) My lil one rates the recipe by saying "Nummm" instead of Yumm. That's her way and I love to hear that. It suddenly occurred to me that I would keep the blog's name as such. This is the dialogue Dyuti asks me almost everyday whether I would be making any special for her. She wants to see something new & eye-catching every time.

Coming to the recipe, Baklava has it's Turkish origin. It's a rich pastry made of layers of Phyllo pastry sheets filled with chopped nuts and sweetened with sugar syrup.



More details on this dish can be found here

Well, I've made Baklava from scratch :) I wasn't keen on using the ready-made Phyllo sheets. After making the dough and keeping it to rest, I was not sure whether I'll end up in thin sheets.Literally was praying and
thinking if this doesn't turn out good, I may have to redo the dough. Alas I got the sheets very thin and it worked. I was really happy the way the sheets turned out.

You can get ready-made Phyllo sheets from supermarkets which ease your work a lot.The ready-made one's would be very thin as they are done using machine. Make sure once you open them up, cover the sheets with a damp cloth as it would dry out quickly.

We all loved the Home-made Baklava. Believe me, it is truly divine and so tasty in every bite. Sathya had taken to office and I was told his colleagues all liked it a lot :). Lucky for them; they always get a share of my desserts :P

Ingredients:

Phyllo Dough:

All Purpose flour - 1 and 3/4 cup
Salt - a pinch
Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp
Water - 3/4 cup

Sugar Syrup:

Sugar - 2 cups
Water - 1 cup
Lemon juice - Half of a lime/lemon
Rosewater - 1 tbsp

Filling:

Pistachios - 1/2 cup
Almonds    - 1/2 cup
Any nuts of your choice
Butter - 1/2 cup

Preparing Phyllo dough:

1) Sieve All Purpose flour and salt in a bowl.
2) Make a well in the centre and pour the vegetable oil & water.
3) Mix with a spoon until well combined.
4) Knead the dough for around 20 minutes. Use flour to dust the kitchen counter so that it doesn't stick.
5) Place the dough in a bowl after kneading and cover it with a damp cloth. Keep it to rest for 1 hour.While the dough is resting, you may prepare the sugar syrup & the filling.



Preparing Sugar syrup:

1) Mix sugar, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan and heat the syrup in medium heat.
2) Allow it to boil.
3) Let it boil for another 10 minutes. The mixture would now thicken up a bit.
4) Add rose water and let it simmer for another 2-3 minutes.
5) Switch off the stove and let it cool.
6) Once cooled, the thick syrup can be stored in an air-tight container and refrigerate for a month.

Preparing filling:

1) Coarsely chop any nuts of your choice.
2) Add 2 tbsp butter & 1/4 cup of sugar syrup to the chopped nuts.
3) Mix the filling.

Rolling the Phyllo dough:

1) Take a small size of dough and roll it to a very thin sheet just like rolling chappathi. Use flour to dust the work surface.
2) Stretch all sides of the sheet.
3) Lay the sheet on the back of your hands and stretch using your knuckles.
4) Make sure you cover the rest of the dough with the damp cloth when you are rolling up the sheet.
5) Refer link on how to roll the sheets.

Assembling Baklava :

1) Grease baking tray with butter.
2) Place the first phyllo sheet on the baking tray and grease the sheet with butter.
3) Roll the second phyllo sheet in a similar manner mentioned above and place it on top of the first phyllo sheet, then grease with butter.
4) Continue another 3 similar phyllo sheets greasing with butter; make sure you grease each phyllo sheets with butter.
5) Place the filling and spread evenly.
6) Cover the filling with phyllo sheet, greasing with buter and continue with another 4 phyllo sheets; each one to grease with butter.
7) You would have a 5 phyllo sheets below, then the filling and topped with another 5 phyllo sheets.
8) Please make sure you grease each phyllo sheets with butter as that results in super flakiness.
9) You may now cut the Baklava into any shapes you desire before it goes to the oven.



Baking:

1) Pre-heat oven to 350°F/180°C/gas mark 4 for 10 minutes.
2) Bake the tray for 30 minutes.
3) Top of the Baklava should be golden brown in colour which is an indication that it's done.

Sweetening the Baklava:

1) Pour the Sugar syrup all over the Baklava once it's out from the oven. You could hear sizzling noise when the syrup is poured over the hot Baklava.
2) Let the Baklava sit for few hours so as to absorb the syrup.
3) You may refrigerate and can indulge in this Turkish sweet delight.


3 comments:

  1. Thank you for posting this, Sabna. Baklava is one of my fav Middle Eastern sweets ever!!!

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  2. My dear Cousin

    That pastry was just awesome!!

    I had a piece even before having my breakfast which as you know is unusual for me.

    You have the makings of a master chef my dear.

    After all it runs in our family, doesn't it.......... you mum, my mum and of course our grandmother who you never knew.

    Keep cooking.

    Love your blog.

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