Best Baklava In London

Baklava is a favourite dessert of many, and who can really blame them?  The sweet flavours and melt in the mouth texture are really hard to resist. Finding the perfect Baklava in London can be a tough task, but we are on hand to point you in the right direction. But first of all, let’s go back to basics.

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For those who haven’t yet been lucky enough to try Baklava, this sweet dessert is made from layers of sweet phyllo pastry filled with chopped nuts, usually almonds, walnuts or pistachios and topped with syrup or honey. These ingredients are a recipe for a dish so rich and delicious that it has actually been served to royalty in the past and there has been ongoing debates regarding which country claims it as its own regional dish.

What is the history of Baklava?

The sweet dessert takes both time, preparation and also includes some high value ingredients so in it’s countries of origin, it is a dish reserved for very special occasions such as weddings, Christmas and it is even served at some Easter church ceremonies with the 40 layers of phyllo representing the 40 days of Lent. 

With the popularity of the dish, also comes blurred lines and many arguments around which ethic group served it first, with both Greece and Turkey claiming the dish as its own. These arguments still have not been completely laid to rest! The so-called “Baklava conflict” has been ongoing for many years but erupted into a full blown Baklava war in 2006 when Greek Cypriots decided to take ownership for the desert, with this came much anger from Turkey.

 Finally, in 2013 the argument was taken to the EU where Turkey was awarded a prize for “protected status” for their Baklava- much to the disappointment of the Greeks! Despite the controversy, both countries continue to enjoy the dessert and serve slightly different versions of the dish to friends and family.

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Baklava at Tarshish London

If you are looking for a traditional Turkish Baklava in London, then Turkish restaurant Tarshish, based in North London is the place to go. Our Baklava is served warm with chopped nuts and ice cream and is the perfect sweet finish to your meal.

Whether you are a Baklava connoisseur, or if you are yet to experience the rich and sweet flavours, both need to head to Tarshish based in Wood Green to taste the best Baklava in London.

How to make Baklava

Whilst the restaurants have closed, why not satisfy your sweet tooth and attempt a Baklava at home? Follow this recipe for the perfect Baklava.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 pound of chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, or pistachios are best, or use a combination of them)
  • 1 pound of phyllo dough
  • 1 cup of butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 teaspoon of ground cloves

For the syrup:

  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Finely ground pistachios for garnish (optional)

 

HOW TO MAKE

1 Lightly grease a 9×13 pan and set the oven to 350°F.

2 Roll out the dough and separate into two. Cover with a damp towel to keep the dough moist. 

3 Chop the nuts into small,even sized pieces, using a food processor if possible! Mix with sugar, cinnamon, and cloves. 

4 In a separate bowl, melt the butter in the microwave.

5 Place the first sheet of phyllo dough into your plan and using a pastry brush, brush the sheet with melted butter. Repeat seven times until you have 8 layers of pastry. 

6 Add a thin layer of the nut mixture to the sheets and cover finally with two more sheets of phyllo (again brushing with butter). Repeat this process until the nut mixture is all used up. The sheets may crinkle up but this just adds to the texture!

7 Cut your dish into 24 equal squares and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 mins or until lightly browned and golden and crispy. 

8 Whilst in the oven baking, use this time to make your syrup. To do this combine cinnamon, sugar, lemon juice and honey with water in a saucepan. Bring this to a boil and reduce the heat to medium low and let simmer for 7 mins until slightly thickened. At this point, remove the cinnamon stick and allow to cool.

9 Spoon the cooled syrup over the baklava whilst still hot and let the dish cool for at least 4 hours. Garnish with some finely crushed pistachios and enjoy!