- 20 sheets phyllo dough 9"x13", thawed
- 2 cups finely chopped walnuts
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup clarified butter melted, or ½ cup melted butter and ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups sugar
- ½ tsp lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Combine nuts, vanilla and sugar. Set aside.
- Unwrap room temperature phyllo dough and unroll sheets onto a cutting board to facilitate your work. Begin laying phyllo dough sheets in the pan two at a time. Lightly drizzle with butter after every two sheets making sure you baste the edges. Continue layering and drizzling sheets until have 10 sheets.
- Spread nut mixture evenly over phyllo dough sheets. Drizzle with butter again.
- Resume layering and drizzling until you have used all the sheets.
- Score the baklava into 2-inch diamond pieces by first making cuts two inches apart lengthwise and then making diagonal cuts 2 inches apart.
- Pour the remaining butter over top.
- Bake for 40 minutes until deeply golden. Let cool
- Bring sugar and water to a boil over medium heat. Stir constantly until sugar is dissolved then add lemon juice and stop stirring. Simmer for 2 minutes until slightly thickened. Pour hot syrup over cooled baklava.
- Let baklava completely cool before cutting again and serving.
- Baklava tastes even better after sitting overnight, loosely covered.
- Phyllo dough should be thawed in the refrigerator overnight (if frozen) and then brought to room temperature an hour before using.
- You can use different size pans such as a half sheet pan (12″x 18″) but trim the phyllo dough sheets accordingly so you have 10 sheets on the bottom layer and 10 sheets for the top.
- Clarified butter is essential to keeping the baklava crisp as it is lacking the water in regular butter.
- You do not want to completely cut the baklava before baking as it will be done again after baking. Just enough to score the diamond shapes.
- The lemon juice added to the simple syrup is only to keep the sugar from crystallizing.
- To add chocolate drizzle: melt 6 oz dark chocolate with 1 Tbsp shortening