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Baklava with Pistachios and Walnuts – Fistikli ve Cevizli Baklava

Baklava with pistachios and walnuts, such a delicious treat

Baklava with pistachios and walnuts, such a delicious treat

My sister and family coming over from Istanbul to visit us, we are all over the moon. This calls for a celebration and I decided to make some baklavas for them – My dear brother-in-law, Mehmet, knows his baklava very well, so I am hoping this would pass the test!-

An Ottoman legacy, baklava is one of the greatest creations from the pastry chefs at the Topkapi Palace. Generally, baklava is enjoyed as a mid-morning sweet snack with a cup of Turkish coffee, or as a mid-afternoon treat with a glass of tea or after lunch or dinner. There is no bad time for a good piece of baklava! The real thing shouldn’t be very sweet and heavy; on the contrary it should be light enough to tempt you to eat a small plateful.

This recipe is an adaptation from Ghillie Basan’s The Complete Book of Turkish Cooking, one of my favorite Turkish cookery authors. I greatly admire her passion and knowledge for Turkish Cooking, her books are highly recommended. My version of baklava is less sweet and more fragrant and lemony, must say really pleased with it. With using filo pastry sheets, baklava is much easier to make than you think. I hope you would give it a go sometime and enjoy this wonderful treat.

Home-made baklava; delicious and easier than you think!

Home-made baklava; delicious and easier than you think!

Serves 12
Preparation time – 20 minutes Cooking time – Just over 1 hour

180 gr/6 oz /3/4 cup melted butter
450 gr/1 lb filo pastry sheets
340 gr/ 12 oz mixture of walnuts and pistachios, finely chopped
5 ml / 1 tsp ground cinnamon

For the syrup:
2 cups sugar
1 ¾ cups water

Juice of 1/2 lemon

To serve:
Ground pistachio nuts to sprinkle over the baklavas

Preheat the oven to 160 C/ 325 F / Gas 3

Make the syrup first. Put the sugar into a heavy pan, pour in water and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. When the sugar is dissolved, lower the heat and stir in the lemon juice, them simmer for about 15 minutes, until the syrup thickens. Leave to cool in the pan.

Melt the butter in a small pan and then brush a little over the bottom and sides of a 30cm/12in baking pan.

To thaw frozen filo sheets, it is best to place it in the fridge the night before and bring it to room temperature 2 hours before using. Place a sheet of filo pastry in the bottom of the greased pan and brush it with melted butter(trim from the edges to fit, if needed). Continue until you have used half the filo sheets, brushing each one with butter. Ease the sheets into the corners and trim the edges if they flop over the rim of the pan.

Spread the nuts over the last buttered sheet and sprinkle with the cinnamon, then continue as before with the remaining filo sheets. Brush the top one as well, then, using a sharp knife cut diagonal parallel lines right through all the layers to the bottom to form small diamond shapes.

Bake the baklava into the oven for about 1 hour, until the top is golden – if it is still pale, increase the temperature for a few minutes at the end.

When the baklava is ready, remove it from the oven and slowly pour the cooled syrup over the piping hot pastry. Return to the oven for 2-3 minutes to soak up the syrup, then take it out and leave to cool.

Once the baklava is cool, lift the diamond shaped pieces out of the pan and arrange them in a serving dish. Serve baklava pieces with ground pistachios over them, always at room temperature.

Note: Baklava should never be stored at the refrigerator, as the fat congeals, pastry absorbs the moisture and it becomes soggy.

Baklava with walnuts and pistachios

Baklava with walnuts and pistachios

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

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15 Responses to Baklava with Pistachios and Walnuts – Fistikli ve Cevizli Baklava

  1. zerrin July 20, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

    Your baklava looks so mouthwatering Özlem! Perfect treat for any celebration! I love when it’s not too sweet, and flavoring it with lemon is a great idea!

    • Ozlem Warren July 21, 2013 at 11:29 am #

      Merhaba Zerrin, thank you so much :) I agree with you, baklava is a perfect fit for any celebration -I like to make my own as you can adjust the syrup to your liking, a little less sweet and a bit lemony for me : ) sevgiler, Ozlem

  2. Jo September 1, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

    Looks and sounds delicious Ozlem! I like te sound of the refreshing lemon too :-)

    • Ozlem Warren September 2, 2013 at 10:21 am #

      Thank you Jo, it is a pleasant surprise to witness that you can make baklava at home, easily, and tastes pretty good – love the little refreshing lemon kick; thank you for stopping by;)

  3. Shima February 4, 2014 at 10:46 pm #

    Phyllo sheets’i tek tek ust uste aralarini hic yaglamadan seriyorum, orta kisima cekilmis “pecan nut” koyuyorum, ve her yaprak bitene kadar sermeye devam ediyorum. Bu islem bitip baklavayi dilim dilim kestikten sonra tereyagi yada zeytinyagini ustunde gezdirince, yag, hem o an, hemde piserken her katin arasina, kendiliginden yayiliyor, aynisi serbetini dokerken de oluyor. Boylece baklava yapimi cok kolay oluyor, yurt disinda yasayanlara bu yolu tavsiye ederim.

    • Ozlem Warren February 5, 2014 at 1:25 pm #

      Merhabalar, paylasiminiz icin cok tesekkurler, bu metodu denemek isterim – ellerinize saglik.

  4. Sara March 12, 2014 at 11:34 am #

    Hi,thank you for the great baklava recipe. I made it and it turned out amazing. I am an Iranian Azeri living in orumieh near Turkey and I have traveled to Turkey several times and oh I love Turkish baklava. Again I thank you for this recipe. I will be making this over and over again !

    • Ozlem Warren March 12, 2014 at 2:50 pm #

      Dear Sara, delighted to hear you enjoyed the baklava recipe, thank you so much for letting me know. I love our baklava too; I hope you can visit Turkey again soon : ) Cok Selamlar, Ozlem

  5. Maryam Nayibova July 22, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    Merhaba! I made this recipe last night, it was very delicious and easy to make! The only thing is that mine was not as puffy, as your pictures look. I know the Baklavas are supposed to be fuller, any idea why that happens? Too much butter? :/

    • Ozlem Warren July 22, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      Merhaba Maryam, many thanks for your comment, glad you enjoyed your home made baklava! Filo pastry sheets vary from country to country (size as well as texture, some more moist, some drier), so that may be an effect. Once pouring the syrup baking again for3 – 5 mins helps to puff up, perhaps a little more time baking to get that puffy, crispy texture. You can also use less butter if you prefer. Generally the bottom half is moister than the top half, as it absorbs more syrup. Hope this helps, do let me know if you have any other questions.

  6. Ozlem Warren September 1, 2013 at 10:07 am #

    Thank you for sharing my baklava article!

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