A Sweet Resolution
Several years ago, at the urging of Dr. Smirniotopoulus, Cesar and I tried our hand at making baklava. Knowing that I am a fan of all things Greek, Dr. S. jokingly asked me one day why he couldn’t get a Greek coffee and piece of baklava at our coffee bar. I took this as a challenge. That day I searched for recipes online and found one that I adapted to my own tastes. When Dr. S., our official taster, enthusiastically approved, Cesar and I knew we had gold. Baklava then became a popular, albeit sporadic, item at the coffee bar.
Each tray of baklava we produce contains two pounds of walnuts and about 30 sheets of phyllo. Other ingredients include butter (of course), brown sugar, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and rose water. We take our time and do it right. To me, this means using the best ingredients and enjoying the process of making it. Making the layers is a team effort, as laying down the soft, moist sheets of phyllo can be tricky and is best accomplished with two sets of hands, working as one. It is a labor of love. You can taste the love in it!
I am happy to share our recipe, but I always warn the baklava maker-to-be that the number one ingredient is patience.
Baklava will be available in the coffee shop today and the USU Café – while it lasts. This is our first pan of 2017 and we resolve to make this wonderful treat more often this year. We’re still working on the Greek coffee though…