Gourmet Fast app

Get our Gourmet Fast app and you can download 140 recipes for your iPhone.

Subscribe to Gourmet

Subscribe this month and receive a copy of the Agrarian Kitchen cookbook by Rodney Dunn. Hurry, offer ends February 22.

Gourmet on your iPad

Download the latest issue of Gourmet Traveller for your iPad.

Recipes for big cuts

Go big this season with cuts large enough to feed a crowd: legs of lamb, sides of beef, suckling pigs, and whole fish. The pineapple jerked pork neck with crushed pineapple relish and black bean and rice salad is calling your name...

Bali's best local food

You haven’t eaten on Indonesia’s most popular island until you’ve explored the rich, bold flavours found in the traditional warungs. Bali insider Maya Kerthyasa takes us on a tour of the best.

Fast and fabulous recipes

Fast, fresh and fabulous – what’s not to like? Here's a preview of the recipes in our February 2015 issue.

Jamaican goat curry

"Goat is the world's most consumed meat and we hardly give it a look in Australia. I adore it in so many different preparations, from South-East Asian dishes through to Italian braises, but my favourite is Jamaican curry with its heady spices," says Evans. "I see spices as nature's medicine cabinet and use them in as much of my cooking as possible. If you can't get your hands on quality goat meat (farmers' markets are a good bet or online), then feel free to substitute lamb or another protein. But if you've never had goat before, I urge you to give it a whirl."

Top 10 Sydney Restaurants 2014

Looking for the best restaurants in Sydney? Here are the top ten Sydney restaurants from our 2014 Australian Restaurant Guide.

Pavlova Recipes

Everyone loves a pav. Here are some of our favourite recipes.

Top 10 Melbourne Restaurants 2014

Looking for the best restaurants in Melbourne? Here's our top ten from our 2014 Australian Restaurant Guide.

Classic Australian recipes

From barbecued prawns and party pies to lamingtons and Pavlova, these are ten Australian classics you can really sink your teeth into.

Baklava


You'll need

250 gm each pistachios and walnuts, finely chopped 100 gm caster sugar 3 tsp ground cinnamon 200 gm butter, coarsely chopped 500 gm filo pastry   Honey syrup 300 gm caster sugar 125 gm honey 1 lemon, finely grated rind and juice only (or to taste) 1 cinnamon quill 4 drops rosewater, or to taste

Method

  • 01
  • Combine nuts, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat, set aside and keep warm. Brush a 3cm-deep 24cm x 34cm baking tray with butter. Cut filo sheets to fit tray snugly and cover with a damp tea towel.
  • 02
  • Preheat oven to 180C. Layer one-third of the filo pastry in tray, brushing butter between each layer. Scatter evenly with half the nut mixture, then top with half the remaining pastry, brushing butter between each layer. Scatter over remaining nuts, top with remaining filo, brushing between each layer with butter. Refrigerate until firm (15 minutes), then cut through all pastry layers into 4cm diamonds with a sharp knife. Bake until golden and cooked through (45 minutes-1 hour). Cover loosely with foil partway through cooking if top browns too quickly.
  • 03
  • Meanwhile, for honey syrup, combine sugar, honey, lemon rind, cinnamon and 300ml water in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to low, simmer until infused (20 minutes). Remove from heat, strain through a fine sieve, stir through lemon juice and rosewater to taste and set aside.
  • 04
  • Cool baklava slightly (2-3 minutes), pour over syrup evenly, set aside at room temperature to cool completely (overnight if possible). Baklava will keep in tray, covered, for 3-4 days.
This recipe is from the August 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

Baklava has come a very long way - in both historical and geographical terms. Many ethnic groups lay claim to this moreish pastry, and, truth be told, many have played a part in its evolution. Known as one of the Middle East's grandest sweets, it's believed to have started, in its crudest form, with the Assyrians around 8BC. Thin bread dough was layered with chopped nuts and honey and baked in wood-burning ovens. Greek merchants travelling east to Mesopotamia then took the recipe to Athens, and finessed it with leaf-thin filo pastry (phyllo means leaf in Greek). The Armenians, located on the Spice Route, introduced cinnamon and cloves; the Arabs added cardamom and rosewater.

From its humble origins, it became a sweet adored by the wealthy. At the peak of the Ottoman Empire, Turkish sultans and their harems prized it for its purported aphrodisiac qualities - cinnamon for women, cardamom for men and cloves for both sexes. Unfortunately, many people's experience of baklava today does little to recapture its former glory. Often what's commercially available is made with low-grade oils instead of butter, and peanuts are substituted for the traditional (and more expensive) walnuts and pistachios, to poor effect.

The success of baklava lies in using the freshest nuts you can find. Source them from a supplier with a large turnover or try Middle Eastern stores, which often sell large quantities at reasonable costs. (You can store nuts in the freezer at home for optimum freshness.) The same rules apply with spices - use the freshest possible. We've used just a single note of cinnamon in this recipe, but you could also add a pinch or two of other traditional spices.

You can use any honey for the syrup, but this is a good opportunity to use your favourite single-blossom honey - it will be shown off to good effect here. And allow plenty of time for the syrup to work its way between the layers of pastry and nuts. The end result shouldn't be dry - rather it should be a syrup-soaked treat which still has a nutty crunch. Baklava will keep for several days and arguably gets better over time, so make up a big tray and indulge your sweet tooth with this perfumed delicacy.

At A Glance

  • Serves 45 people
GT
reader dinner

Join us for a very special reader dinner with The River Café's co-founder Ruth Rogers who's headlining the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival.

Read More
Win
one of ten dinners at Kazbah!

Win one of ten $200 vouchers to eat at Kazbah restaurant in New South Wales and Queensland. Get in quick!

Enter now
Gourmet TV

Check out our video section for our latest cover recipes, chef cooking demos, interviews and more.

Watch Now

At A Glance

  • Serves 45 people

You might also like...

Quick meals

recipes

Christmas pudding ice-cream

Beer recipes

recipes

Raspberry and Mint Mojito

Summer seafood recipes

recipes

Serge Dansereau: Blueberry vanilla tart

Summer salads

recipes

Barbecue trout bundles with prosciutto and button mushrooms

Quick summer meals

recipes

Serge Dansereau: Homemade lemonade

Christmas classic recipes

recipes

Serge Danserau: Duck confit and potato terrine

Adriano Zumbo's Christmas recipes

recipes

Serge Dansereau: Leek tartlets

Holiday entertaining recipes

recipes

conversion tool

 
get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.