Baklava is a dessert made of layers of flaky phyllo pastry filled with crushed nuts and sweetened with rose water syrup.
There are many different types of baklava around the Middle East. Some people use pistachio for making baklava; some use walnut, hazelnut or even a mix of three of them.
The key to making a flaky, crunchy baklava is to make the syrup ahead and let it cool down completely, then pour it over the hot baklava as soon as it comes out of the oven.
You can keep baklava covered at room temperature for up to three days and in the fridge for up to 10 days.
Baklava 15 Steps
Place the water, sugar, saffron and cardamom in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves.
Let the syrup simmer for about 5 minutes. Take off the heat and add rose water and lemon juice. Set aside to cool down and take out the cardamom pods.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
In a food processor, add the pistachio, cinnamon and cardamom. Pulse few times to chop roughly.
Brush a 9-inch round pan with melted butter.
Take two sheets of phyllo dough and place on the pan. Brush the dough generously with butter.
Repeat this process a few more times until you have used up about 1/3 of the phyllo pastry.
Spread 1/2 of the pistachio evenly on top.
Continue assembling the baklava, two sheets of phyllo pastry at a time using another 1/3 of the phyllo. Brush each two layers with butter.
Spread the remaining pistachio mixture evenly on top.
Finish the remaining 1/3 of the phyllo pastry following the same process. Brush the very top sheet of phyllo with butter.
Using a sharp knife, cut the pastry into diamond shaped pieces.
Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and crisps.
As soon as you remove the baklava from the oven, pour the cooled syrup all over the hot baklava.
Garnish with ground pistachio and rose petals if desire and enjoy!