Last year at Food Blogger Connect, I tasted this marvellous smoked chilli honey by Gran Luchito. It was tremendously moreish with the manchego type cheese they offered with a salty cracker. But honey being honey also deserves a little dessert attention. I gave it a whirl in the syrup for baklava and loved it. I used almonds as this is all I had in the cupboard but you could use pistachios or cashews.
Here’s the recipe. This makes enough for one 8 x 8 inch tin. I chose to cut it into heart shapes but you can stay traditional and go with diamonds or squares.
- 200g box of ready rolled filo pastry or around 12 sheets
- 200g unsalted butter
- 225g soft brown sugar
- 225g whole almonds
- 100g ground almonds
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 75ml chilli honey – I used Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli Honey
- 55l water
- 55g caster sugar
To make it
- Line a 8 x 8 inch baking tin with some greaseproof paper and set aside.
- Pop the oven on to 180C.
- Blitz the whole almonds in a food processor until you have large breadcrumb sized pieces.
- Then add the ground almonds, sugar and cinnamon and blitz again for a couple of seconds til combined.
- Unroll the filo pastry and cut enough to fit the base of your baking tin – I simply place the baking tin on top and the score a knife round the edge. You should have enough for two squares.
- Cover the pastry with a damp tea towel and set aside.
- Melt the butter in the microwave or a small saucepan.
- Brush a sheet of pastry with butter and place the buttered side down into the baking tin. Brush the top with more butter.
- Do this again for about 8 more sheets. You can use up the little strips that were leftover from cutting too.
- On top of the eighth sheet, spoon over a nice layer of the ground nut and sugar filling.
- Place another sheet of buttered pastry on top of this. Add another layer of filling and then more buttered pastry. Repeat about two or three more times depending on how thick you are layering.
- Finally place another eight sheets of buttered filo on top.
- Baste the top with the remaining butter and then cut your baklava into shapes as you wish. Traditionally they are diagonal.
- Bake for 45 minutes – the top should be a golden brown.
- While it’s baking make the syrup by mixing the honey, water and caster sugar in a small saucepan. Bring it to the boil and then let it simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Take the baklava out of the oven and pour over the warm syrup.
- Leave this to cool in the baking tin to get a good soaking and then gently prise out of the tin and serve.
I like these warm with a little pouring cream over the top. Also very lovely with some vanilla ice cream.