Growing up my mom would make us Baklava every year during the holidays. I eagerly helped her lay the layers of the thin flaky phyllo dough. I remember thinking wow.... this is a tricky one. Then of course after all the layering the wait. OH the wait. It had to sit over night. That's the worst thing you can do to a kid. Call them over to help make a sweet treat. Then say "hands off kid, not until tomorrow."
After becoming and adult, I rarely tackled making Baklava and my mom hasn't made it in probably over a decade! This Thanksgiving, I decided I needed to tackle one of my favorite holiday treats but with a Turkey Day twist on it.
Being a New Hampshire girl, I have maple syrup running through my veins. So naturally I switched the honey in a traditional baklava for some maple. Since pecans are a common used ingredient in Thanksgiving baking, I figured I could use those instead of the walnuts and pistachios I normally use.
Flaky, mapley, sticky, nutty, cinnamony, awesomeness.
Maple Pecan Baklava
3 tsp ground cinnamon
2 1/2 cups pecans
1 pound thawed phyllo dough
1 cups unsalted butter (melted)
FOR THE SYRUP
1 1/4 cup maple syrup
1 1/4 cups water
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
In a food processor add in pecans, and 3 tsp cinnamon. Pulse until finely diced. Divide into thirds.
Unroll phyllo dough and trim the sides so it will fit in a 9x13 pan.
Brush the bottom of your pan with melted butter. Lay a sheet of phyllo dough on the bottom. Brush the top with melted butter and top with another sheet of dough. Repeat this process with a total of 10 phyllo dough sheets. Sprinkle with 1/3 of your nut mixture.
Top with a sheet of phyllo, brush with butter and continue that process for at least 6 sheets. Top with another 1/3 of your nut mixture. Repeat the process of laying 6 sheets of dough, brushing each with melted butter.
Sprinkle with the remaining nuts. Layer with phyllo dough and continue alternating with melted butter and sheets of phyllo for about10 sheets.
Bake at 320 for 30-40 minutes or until it starts to get golden on top. Slice into squares. ( I cut 28) Return to oven and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from oven to cool for 1 1/2 hours.
Meanwhile prepare your syrup. In a sauce pan over medium heat, add maple, water, sugar and cinnamon. Bring to a boil for about 10 minutes or just until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is smooth.
Cut baklava a 2nd time in the same spots you did during the baking process. Pour syrup over the entire pan.
Allow to sit covered at room temperature overnight or 12 hours.
Cut a third time and enjoy!