Baklava(Baghlava, باقلوا) is a traditional middle eastern sweet. According to historians, it was first made by Turkish people living in central Asia. Nowadays, it is a typical dessert where those Turkish ancestors are living, including Iran, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greek, and Russia. Historian Paul D. Buell states that the word Baklava may have extracted from the Mongolian term Bayla which means to wrap. This delightful sweet is made of thin layers of dough and nuts. These Filo and nuts are dipped in a sweet syrup and create a masterpiece.
In Iran, they cook this beautiful dessert in most cities. The most famous Baghlava comes from Sardrud, a town in Azerbaijan province near Tabriz. You can find Sardrud Baghlava in different flavors such as pistachio, almond, and walnut. Other cities of Iran that cook and sell this dish at their confectionaries are Yazd, Qazvin, and Kashan. Baku’s Baghlava and Turkish Baklava are very famous in the world. This delightful sweet is served with tea almost everywhere. Somehow, tea is needed to moderate the hight sweet flavor. In Iran and especially in Tabriz, they serve it as a dessert in most classic restaurants. Furthermore, it is served as a formal dessert and sweet in official ceremonies such as wedding parties. It best accompanies traditional Persian dishes such as Chelo Kabab as a dessert.
Different types of Baklava:
According to the region of baking and the ingredients, there are many kinds of Baklava available. Moreover, you may find different types of it based on shape and cutting form. In Iran, there are many different types. For example, the most famous Baklava of Sardrud is walnut Baghlava, which is filo stuffed with chopped walnuts and dipped in a sweet syrup. Sometimes, this syrup is honey or milk and honey, some times it is merely water, and sugar tastes up by some flavors such as cardamom or rose. In Yazd, there is Loze Baklava, which is named after its shape.
Loze means diamond in Farsi, and because this Baghlava has a diamond shape, they call it Loze. In Istanbul, Baku, and many other cities, Baghlava usually is a dish of filo stuffed with chopped walnuts or pistachio (mostly walnuts) and sweetened in a syrup of sugar and water.
Important Nutrition Facts of Baklava:
Baklava has a notable high calorie. It contains 540 kcal per 100gr. This calorie is high when you consider that an adult needs about 1800kcal a day. A portion of Baklava per serving has about 250 kcal. However, the calorie and other nutritions can change according to the type. It contains a high amount of carbohydrates and protein, too. It has a positive effect on neuro system enhancement.
Moreover, since it has a high carbohydrate and protein amount, and it produces a sufficient amount of energy for the body, it is better to use it before exercises and sports activities. If you have high cholesterol, or you have diabetes, you should never mind eating this food. Moreover, if your losing weight, completely forget about this food!
Baghlava is made of filo paste and nuts and syrup. To make a filo syrup, you need flour, eggs, salt, and milk. Moreover, in making Baklava, you need yolks and milk and nuts. They all have acceptable vegetarian sources. Nevertheless, if you are a vegan, you need to replace the milk with almond milk, and you also need to replace the eggs with some vegan source. This dish is the most delicious vegetarian dessert; you can ever enjoy.
Serving style of Baklava:
Iranians usually serve Baklava as a dessert or as a starter during a party, and they serve it in small portions and often comes along with a cup of black tea. Black tea is the item that helps to moderate the sweetness of this dessert. It is inevitable to eat only one piece of Baghlava, so if you are hosting a party, consider two or more Baghlavas per person. It is possible to make Cake Baghlava, which is either a simple cake garnished with this dessert or a cake baked like it. Note that, the flavor of eating a piece of Baghlava along with a small cup of bitter black tea, is a taste you would like to repute time by time.
What are the ingredients of Baklava?
The main ingredient that other ingredients stick to it and create the final structure is filo(phyllo) paste. You can either make it by yourself or by phyllo pastry sheets. I recommend you to buy prepared ones to save time. If you want to make it on your own, you need flour, milk, salt, sugar, and oil. The next item you need is the nut. You can stuff the layers of your paste with walnut, pistachio or almond. Hazelnut is possible, too. You can also use a mixture of nuts. Depend on the type of dish you are preparing, and you might need honey or sugar to make a syrup. Moreover, you need a sufficient amount of oil and milk to soak the filo sheets.
How to cook Baklava?
If you are going to make the paste yourself, first, you have to bake the paste. You need to make a dough out of flour, water, and oil and bake it in very flat thin shapes. After you have the phyllo ready, you can start to make Baghlava. Prepare a dish that suits in your oven, pour some oil in the bottom. You can also use baking papers or flour along with oil to avoid sticking. Then place a layer of filo inside the dish gently. Place two-five layers then pout chopped nuts on them. Then again, put some other sheets and nut and continue this process until the phyllo is over.
Then you put your dish in the oven and wait for it to bake. At last, you can sparkle some nut grind on it to form the taste and appearance. For a delicious and soft Baghlava, it is better to dip each sheet of filo with milk and oil.
This Baklava recipe is adequate for making sixteen 2-inch square shapes Baghlava. The preparation time is 15 minutes and cooking time is 45 minutes.
- 20 phyllo sheets
- 7 oz pistachio
- 7 oz walnuts
- 1 teaspoon grind cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cardamom grind
- ¼ cup of sugar
- 1.8 oz butter
- ¾ cup of sugar
- ¾ cup of water
- ¾ cup of honey
- Heat your oven to 170’c.
- Chop the walnuts
- Chop the pistachio and separate ¼ of it for decorating
- Mix walnuts, ¾ pistachios, and sugar with cinnamon oil
- Melt the butter
- Brush the phyllo sheets with butter
- Place a layer of phyllo and cover it with the nut mixture you have made
- Put another layer and cover it again
- Continue this process until your stiffing and phyllo are over
- Put the dish into the oven
- After 45 minutes, take it out and let it cool down
- Pour water, sugar, and honey into a pot and heat it for 10 minutes
- Cut your Baklava into 2-inch diamonds
- Pour the syrup into the container and let Baklava absorb it
- Sparkle the remained pistachios on top of them
- Place them gently in another dish while serving.
- To avoid cracks in the phyllo sheets, brush both sides of them with milk and oil each time.
- Pour some oil at the first step to avoid sticking.
- You can use other nuts to your taste.
- Sixteen diamond Baklavas can well serve ten people.
- Ingredients need to have equal temperature while cooking. So, put the phyllo out of the fridge 10 minutes before cooking.