1-lb. “twin pack” phyllo dough (two 8 oz. packs, each containing aproximatelly 20 9×14-inch sheets)
For the filling: one lb. unsalted shelled almonds or pistachios, preferably raw
1/2 cup granulated sugar one tsp. ground cinnamon
One tsp. ground cardamom
Ten oz. (1 1/4 cups) unsalted butter
For the syrup:
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar 1-1/2 tsp. orange flower water (optional; see our ingredient profile for even more information)
Thaw the phyllo overnight in the fridge. After that place the phyllo box on the counter to come to room temperature, 1 1/2 to two hours.
Make the filling:
Put cardamom, cinnamon, sugar, and the pistachios in a food processor. Procedure until the nuts are finely chopped (the biggest must be the color of tiny dried lentils), fifteen to twenty seconds. Set apart.
Assemble the baklava:
Unfold a single package of the phyllo sheets and stack them so they lie flat on the work surface of yours. Protect the high with clear plastic wrap, letting a number of excess plastic fall over just about all 4 edges. Dampen and wring out a kitchen towel and drape it in addition to the clear plastic wrap; it will hold the plastic in position as well as stop the phyllo from drying out.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Brush the bottom part of a 9×13-inch metal pan (preferably with straight sides along with a light color interior to reduce overbrowning on the edges) with several of the butter. Remove a sheet of phyllo from the stack, re cover the remainder (be sure to go over the remaining sheets every time you eliminate a brand new one), and set the sheet in the bottom part of the pan.
Brush the sheet with several of the melted butter but do not soak the phyllo (remember, you will have aproximatelly forty levels of buttered phyllo by the moment you are done). Repeat until you’ve layered and buttered aproximatelly half the sheets from the initial pack – about ten sheets in all. If your pan has somewhat angled sides, arrange the sheets so the extra falls on the exact same aspect of the pan and bring down the additional off every few levels with a paring knife.
Sprinkle about one third of the filling evenly over the phyllo.
Repeat layering and buttering the remaining sheets from the very first pack and then sprinkle on one more third of the filling. Open, unfold, and handle the next pack of phyllo. Butter and layer it as discussed above, sprinkling the remaining filling after layering about half the phyllo, and ending with a last level of phyllo (you might not have to have every one of the butter). Cover loosely and set the pan of baklava in the freezer for thirty minutes (this can make it easier to reduce the pastry).
Bake the baklava:
Position an oven rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.
Before baking, work with a slim, sharp knife (I like serrated) as well as a mild sawing motion to reduce the baklava on the diagonal at 11/2 inch times in a stone pattern. Don’t compress the pastry by pressing down on it with a single hand while cutting with the various other. Not merely are you cutting serving portions, you’re too cutting pathways for the flavored syrup to permeate the pastry, and so make sure you cut the pastry all the right way to the bottom part of the pan. If you’ve an electrical carving knife, this’s the best moment to put it to use.
Bake the baklava until golden, forty to forty five minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely. If making only one of the variants below, run a knife along the cut lines. (Both variations contain sticky substances which can seal the cuts shut during baking, making it hard for the syrup to be absorbed evenly.)
Make the syrup:
Put the high sugar as well as 2/3 cup water in a small saucepan and then bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is actually dissolved and the fluid is actually apparent, aproximatelly five minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add in the orange flower water (if using).
Put the syrup consistently over the whole surface area of the baklava, enabling it to run down into the cut marks and along the sides of the pan. Allow the baklava to cool to room temperature before serving.
The baklava is actually at its best aproximatelly twenty four hours after the syrup is actually added. It is going to keep at room temperature for up to five days, although the consistency changes from crisp and flaky to far more sound and crystallized as time goes by. Both textures are scrumptious and have the fans of theirs.