- 3 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 3 whole cloves
- 1/2 pound walnuts, finely chopped
- 1/2 pound blanched almonds, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 1/2 pounds filo pastry
- 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
In a saucepan, combine 3 cups of the sugar, the water, honey, lemon juice cinnamon stick and whole cloves, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick and cloves, and let cool.
In a large bowl, combine the walnuts, almonds, remaining 1/2 cup sugar, ground cinnamon, and ground cloves and set aside.
Unroll the filo dough on a flat surface and keep it covered with waxed paper and a damp towel so it doesn’t dry out and become brittle. Remove 8 filo sheets, fold, cover and refrigerate for the top layer. Using a pastry brush, brush a 15 1/2 by 11 1/2 by 3 inch baking pan with some of the melted butter. Lay a filo sheet on the bottom of the pan, brush with butter, and repeat using a total of 8 sheets. Sprinkle a handful of the nut mixture over the top filo sheet. Layer 3 more filo sheets, brushing each with butter, and sprinkle again with a handful of the nut mixture. Continue until all the filo sheets and nuts are used, being sure to brush each sheet with butter. Use the reserved 8 sheets of filo for the last, top layer.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Using a long, very sharp knife, cut the baklava into small diamonds: First make 6 evenly spaced lengthwise cuts. Cut straight down until the tip of the knife touches the bottom of the pan, and keeping the knife straight, cut in a straight line all the way. Next, cut diagonally across the lengthwise cuts to form diamonds, starting in one corner and making cuts until you reach the opposite corner.
Heat the remaining butter until it bubbles and pour it over the top of the pastry. Bake for 1 1/4
hours or until evenly golden and flaky. Remove to a rack and spoon the cooled syrup over the entire pastry. Cool in the pan, then serve pieces individually, placing them in decorative paper cups if desired.
Yield: 55 to 60 diamonds