A 6" springform baking pan or a clay baking vessel of similar dimensions is required to make this pastry.
INGREDIENTS | SERVES 4
½ cup chopped walnuts
1½ cups blanched raw almonds
1 tablespoon finely shredded orange rind
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 sheets phyllo pastry
⅓ cup melted unsalted butter (or vegetable shortening)
½ cup sugar
½ cup water
½ cup Greek thyme honey
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Combine and grind walnuts and blanched almonds until coarsely chopped. Add orange rind and cinnamon; mix well.
Spread 1 sheet phyllo on dry work surface in landscape orientation; brush surface completely with melted butter. Add another sheet of phyllo directly over top; brush with butter. Spread ½ ground almond mixture over surface, spreading evenly. Leave 1" gutter of free space all around perimeter of rectangle. Fold 2 short sides of phyllo in toward center about ½″ on either side. Brush both side-edge folds with melted butter.
Fold over entire length of bottom edge of phyllo about 1" (or to start of almond mix). Carefully roll folded bottom edge tightly up toward top edge. Make sure to brush entire length of roll several times with melted butter as you go, especially the space just before top edge where roll will be completed.
When first roll is done, brush exterior with melted butter then liberally brush inside of baking pan with melted butter. Bend roll into circle and line inner periphery of pan with it; the ends will almost but not quite meet. Apply another coat of melted butter to roll then repeat Steps 3–4 with remaining 2 sheets of phyllo and rest of almond mixture.
Carefully (so as not to break it) curl second roll into tighter circle than first; fit within outer circle of rolled phyllo already lining walls of pan. Make sure to leave as little empty space in pan as possible by fitting second roll in a manner that continues outer roll in a tight spiral toward center. Once pan is filled, brush remaining melted butter over top of everything.
Bake 30–40 minutes, until pastry takes on uniform golden-brown color.
Combine sugar, water, and honey in small saucepan; bring to boil. Turn down heat to medium-low; stir well and let syrup simmer another few minutes until ready. The desired consistency is somewhat thicker than olive oil but not quite as thick as honey on its own.
Remove baklava pan from oven and place on plate. Immediately pour hot syrup slowly over top in widening spiral starting from center. Make sure to pour honey mixture over entire pastry. Let stand to cool and for syrup to be absorbed before serving.
PER SERVING Calories: 580 | Fat: 28g | Sodium: 94mg | Carbohydrates: 79g | Fiber: 5.5g | Protein: 11g
Honey as Folk Medicine
A popular Greek folk remedy for sore throats and coughs is to mix equal parts honey and lemon juice and to take a tablespoonful every couple hours as needed.