Armenian recipe preparations tend to be time consuming. Never wanting to spend any more time in the kitchen than necessary, short-cuts had to be created for some of our family favorites. (My day job was as a High School Culinary teacher. I was in kitchens all day long!)
Without a doubt, the most popular Armenian dessert is Paklava (Baklava to non-Armenians). Flaky, buttery layers of Phyllo dough, with a center layer of chopped nuts & cinnamon, then drizzled with a simple syrup, Mmmmmmmmm!
Love it, but this takes too long, so here’s what I do…
Instead of using Phyllo dough sheets, I purchase bite-sized, pre-made Phyllo cups (15 count per box) in the freezer section of my local grocery store. What a time-saver! This works in other recipes, too.
- 2 15-count pkgs. Phyllo cups (Athens brand; found in the frozen food section of grocery store)
- 2 cups walnuts or pecans (finely chopped)
- 1½ tsp. cinnamon
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- Making the Filling: Mix the chopped nuts and cinnamon together in a bowl and set aside until ready to use.
- Making the Simple Syrup: In a small pot, combine the sugar & water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, stirring now and then, until sugar is dissolved and mixture begins to thicken a bit, coating the back of a spoon. Stir in lemon juice. Remove pot from heat. Cool until ready to use.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Remove phyllo cups from packaging and place them on a baking sheet.
- Put about one heaping teaspoon of nut filling in each cup.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from oven. While still hot, drizzle a little of the cooled simple syrup over each cup.
- Serve warm or at room temperature. (Note: for a neater presentation, place each phyllo cup in a mini cupcake paper liner.)