November 26, 2010

Long Time Coming...Thanksgiving Yummies

Hello lovelies...

I feel so bad for not posting in FOREVER. But let's just get right into it.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I know I have a lot to be thankful for...most of all a wonderful family, along with a new addition who is getting bigger and more interesting every day. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. Not only for the delicious feast but because I cherish gathering together with family and friends. There is something simultaneously comforting and energizing about the din of a home filled with loved ones.

This year, besides the usual pumpkin and apple pies, I wanted to do something special and a little exotic for desert. With a two year old and 4 month old kids, I'm always looking for dishes that look like they were a pain in the butt to make but really aren't at all. This Baklava recipe is a no brainer and people have told me its one of the best they've had, maybe because I use an assortment of nuts as apposed to the traditional pistachio or walnut variety. Hope you like it...

1 package Phyllo pastry sheets
2 cups crushed walnuts
2 cup crushed pistachios
1 cup crushed almonds
1 cup crushed pecans
2 cup sugar
1 tbsp. cinnamon
1 tbsp. nutmeg
1 cup water
3/4 cup honey
juice squeezed from 1/2 lemon
1 cinnamon stick
5-6 cloves
2 cups unsalted butter (melted)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Farenheit. Mix the crushed nuts with 1 cup sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Start by buttering a 9x13in. baking pan. Lay down a sheet of Phyllo and brush it with butter. Continue layering 7 more sheets, buttering each one. Evenly sprinkle half the nut mixture on top. Continue with another 4 layers of buttered Phyllo pastry. Cover this with the remaining nuts. Finish off with another 8 layers of butter pastry sheets. Pour the remaining butter on top of everything. Bake for 1 hour or unitl pastry is golden brown. In the meantime, make syrup by bringing water, sugar and honey to a boil. Add cinnamon stick, cloves and lemon juice. Take off heat. When pastry is done baking, cut into squares or diamon shape. Pour syrup over top of pastry and let sit until time to serve while the pastry soaks up the syrup.