January 9, 2003

Thursday evening in San Francisco
Temperature: 52°F
State: Rainage
Humidity: 100%

Courtesy of one of my roommates, here is a recipe for baklava:

Twenty minutes to a half-hour before starting, take the filo dough out of the freezer and let it sit at room temperature. This will allow it to soften from its state of frozen slumber and will prevent needless crack-age while working with it.

First things first. Make the syrup:

Put the following into a saucepan:
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water

Bring to a boil on medium heat. Let boil 8 minutes (slow boil). Add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice and boil 2 minutes more. Let cool at room temperature while you assemble the baklava. The syrup will eventually thicken and become more viscous by the time you’re ready to pour it on.

Now for the fillling. Mix the following together in a bowl:
1 lb. finely ground walnuts
1/2 cup sugar
3 teaspoons cinammon

When the filo dough has properly thawed out and you are ready to begin assemblage, melt 3/4 lb of butter (i.e. 3 sticks). You will need a broad pastry or paint brush with which to paint the filo dough.

Brush the bottom of a rectangular glass pan with butter, then lay down a piece of filo dough. Swish the filo dough with butter. Carry on with this procedure until you’ve used up half the package of dough. Next, dump the nut mixture into the pan and smooth it out. Finish laying out the filo dough, sheet by sheet, with butter brushed in between.

*Imperative* Before you stick this buttered beauty into the oven, cut it into squares.

Bake at a toasty 350°F one hour or until golden brown. If it gets brown before the time is up, cover the baklava with aluminum foil to prevent further tannage.

When done, spoon syrup over baklava immediately.

Oh! If you have butter left over, spoon it onto the baklava after 15 minutes of baking.

Good providence to everyone who makes this noble dessert. Can’t wait to have a chunk of it in Mammoth! Have fun making it, Dana Banana and Y.

Remember 12-24.


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