Because it is cookie season.
And I have yet to actually make a single cookie this December. Sure, I have made a lot of treats, but ZERO cookies.
I made Sugar Cookie Cupcakes, Gingerbread Boy Granola, Potato Chip Fudge, Hot Chocolate French Toast and Dark Chocolate Coffee Bark, but no actual cookies. I did make these crazy easy Idiot Proof Chocolate Covered Pretzel Nutella Turtle cookies, but those were back in November. Gosh, it feels like that was yesterday!
Fudge oh fudge, time is flying by too fast. Christmas is on Wednesday! What?!?!
Anyway, this baklava is still not technically a cookie, but I am hopping you guys can just pretend because I am going to go out on a limb and say that this may just be better than any cookie.
I can’t say for sure because sometimes a real cookie is all you really want or need, but let’s just think of this as one giant buttery chocolate chip cookie (Mmm!!), with a nice, flakey crust.
I took a lot of photos of the process because some people have the tendency to think that Baklava is hard and complicated, but I actually thought is was so easy. The hardest part is layering the phyllo sheets, but once you get the hang of it, the process flows pretty smoothly.
But just in case you ruin a few sheets (trust me I did!), I wrote for the recipe to call for more phyllo dough than you should need. If you end up having extra, use the leftovers for a savory pie, or do what I did and throw a bunch of leftovers in a baking dish with some cheese and top it with the leftover phyllo dough.
The secret to this dish is layers.
The layers of butter and phyllo dough.
Yes, there is lots of butter, but it’s cool because Christmas is in five days so it’s totally acceptable.
And do not try to tell me otherwise.
Oh, and a little side note.
Thank you guys all for your kind comments on yesterday’s post! Most of them were crazy nice. Which is good since I was pretty nervous to share!! You guys have demanded photos of the process. We’ll do!!
But first let’s make some cookie baklava!
The great thing about baklava is that it serves a ton and can be made a least a day in advance.
This is obviously a great thing since it is the holidays and we should all be out playing in the snow, drinking hot cocoa and hanging with friends and family.
Speaking of Christmassy things.
I finally got to watch the Grinch last night. Well, I sort of got to watch it. Asher was hanging out with me after school last night and had it on while I was working, but man it is hard to work when the Grinch is on. It is one of my favorites. The Grinch and The Santa Clause movies, oh, and Miracle on 34th Street and Eloise at Christmas Time!
Ok, really I just love all Christmas movies.
Oh, and you gotta watch Christmas Vacation (filmed practically in my own backyard). It is a Christmas must. Oh jeez, and obviously the Home Alone movies too.
Ok now really, let’s just eat some more Baclava.
Salted Chocolate Chip Cookie Baklava.
Yields: One 9x13 inch pan
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 sticks (1 1/2 cups) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
- 1 cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 pound of phyllo dough
- 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, melted
- Vanilla Simple Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 vanilla bean, spit in half and seeds removed
- flaked sea salt, for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl on high speed until foamy. Beat in flour, granulated sugar and brown sugar until smooth. Add the 3 sticks of softened butter and vanilla extract, beat until smooth and creamy. Stir in chocolate chips, pistachios and walnuts.
Brush a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with some of the melted butter. Layer 10 pieces of phyllo in the dish, brushing each piece with butter before adding the next (keep the remaining dough covered with a damp towel). Gently spread 1/2 of the cookie dough over the phyllo dough (the layer will be somewhat thin). Layer 10 pieces of phyllo on top, brushing each with butter before adding the next. Spread with the remaining half of the cookie dough. Now add the third and final layer of phyllo dough. Layer on 12 pieces of phyllo right on top, brushing each with butter before adding the next.
Cut into the baklava to make strips, about 1 1/2 inches wide. Then make diagonal slices, about 1 1/2 inches apart, to create a diamond pattern. Bake until golden, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Meanwhile, make the syrup. Add the water, brown sugar, vanilla, vanilla bean seeds and the vanilla bean pods to a medium sauce pot. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and remove the vanilla bean pods.
Pour the syrup over the warm baklava and let soak, for at least 6 hours or overnight (I covered my pan after about 2 hours of cooling with plastic wrap). When ready to serve drizzle each piece with melted chocolate and sprinkle with sea salt.
With a side of Christmas Movies. Of course!
*Oh and Don’t forget to enter to win A KitchenAid Stand mixer. The giveaway is going to be ending soon!! Enter here!