Baklava is a popular pastry that originated in the Ottoman Empire and is now enjoyed across the Middle East, Balkans, and Mediterranean regions. Albania is no exception, and Albanian baklava is a sweet and nutty delight that is perfect for any occasion.
The traditional Albanian baklava recipe features layers of flaky phyllo dough, finely chopped walnuts, and a spiced sugar mixture that is baked to perfection and then drenched in a sweet honey syrup. The combination of textures and flavors is simply irresistible.
Making Albanian baklava at home may seem daunting, but with the right ingredients and a little bit of patience, it is a surprisingly easy and rewarding endeavor. Here is a step-by-step recipe for Albanian baklava that is sure to impress your friends and family.
- 1 pound phyllo dough
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups finely chopped walnuts
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with butter.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the chopped walnuts, sugar, cinnamon, and cloves.
- Lay one sheet of phyllo dough in the bottom of the baking dish and brush it with melted butter.
- Add another sheet of phyllo on top and brush it with melted butter. Repeat this process with 6-8 sheets of phyllo.
- Sprinkle about 1/4 cup of the walnut mixture over the phyllo layers.
- Add another layer of phyllo on top and brush with melted butter. Repeat this process until all of the walnut mixture is used.
- Add a final layer of phyllo on top and brush with melted butter.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the baklava into diamond-shaped pieces.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
- While the baklava is baking, combine the honey, water, and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened slightly.
- Remove the baklava from the oven and pour the honey syrup over the top, making sure to cover all of the pieces.
- Allow the baklava to cool completely before serving.
Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just looking to indulge in a sweet treat, Albanian baklava is the perfect choice. Its combination of flaky pastry, crunchy nuts, and sweet honey syrup is sure to please even the most discerning palates. Try making it at home and impress your guests with this classic Albanian dessert.