A fun take on baklava, these baklava rolls, filled with a spiced cashew mixture, make the perfect dessert for your next party! Be sure to see the easy step-by-step tutorial below the recipe.
This post is in partnership with The Fillo Factory.
It is no surprise that baklava is a favorite dessert of mine. Homemade baklava that is, not the stale stuff that’s been mass-produced, boxed up, and left to drown in syrup.
These baklava rolls are a unique take on the beloved traditional. I first stumbled upon the idea in Michael Solmonov’s cookbook Zahav, and was instantly inspired!
The gist: crispy fillo (phyllo) rolls, stuffed with a decadent, spiced cashew mixture, then sweetened with cinnamon lemon syrup.
Watch how to make these baklava rolls
And as I do when making traditional baklava or Greek Spanakopita, I reached for my favorite quality fillo (phyllo), organic fillo dough from The Fillo Factory. It’s vegan and contains no preservatives; no cholesterol; and no trans fat. And one big thing for me as a cook, The Fillo Factory dough always comes in good condition, which makes it easy to work with
Why this Baklava Recipe works?
In my opinion, these baklava rolls are a fun and simple way to serve a party crowd. Place them on a tray as finger food next to a fresh coffee pot, or stick them in small bowls of ice cream for more festive ice-cream sundaes (a delicious idea I came across at a recent Greek festival!)
What to do with the remaining fillo (phyllo) sheets?
You may be asking yourself, this recipe only uses 6 sheets of dough, what would one do with the rest?
No way would I waste the rest of this good organic fillo dough! This recipe is quite forgiving, you can easily double or even triple it to serve a larger crowd (or even use as edible gifts).
But, when I have made this baklava recipe, I almost inevitably make my mom’s savory fillo (phyllo) meat pie–a popular Egyptian recipe. A simple casserole of crispy squares filled with spiced meat. Or, if you want another figer food option, you can make savory phyllo rolls with a meat and feta filling as in this recipe!Print
Cinnamon Lemon Simple Syrup
- 3/4 sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 tsp lemon juice
- Scant 1 cup unsalted raw cashews, lightly toasted
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp ground green cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- Pinch salt
- 2 tbsp ghee or unsalted butter, melted
- Make the syrup: Add the sugar, water, and cinnamon stick to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly until sugar dissolves completely. Add lemon juice and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let sit about 15 minutes to thicken, then remove cinnamon stick. Set aside for now.
- Make the cashew filling: In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade, add the cashews, brown sugar, spices, salt and melted butter. Pulse until the mixture is finely ground (you should end up with something like a coarse paste).
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Assemble the Bakalava Rolls: Lay 3 sheets of fillo (phyllo) evenly on a clean work surface with the long side closest to you. Brush the top generously with the olive oil and melted butter mixture. With a sharp knife, cut the fillo into 4 equal strips. Now working with 1 strip, spoon about 1 1/2 tsp of the cashew filling in a straight line along the bottom edge that is closest to you (leave a little room on either side for the filling to expand). Roll tightly about 4 or 5 times away from you so that the filling is now encased into a fillo roll. Slice the first roll free. Place in a lightly oiled baking sheet.
- Repeat the process to finish the first strip of fillo dough. Then repeat with the remaining strips.
- Lay the next 3 sheets of fillo (phyllo) evenly on a clean work surface with the long side closest to you. Again, brush the top generously with the olive oil and melted butter mixture. With a sharp knife, cut the fillo into 4 equal strips. And repeat the filling and rolling process until you run out of dough. And of course assemble in your lightly oiled baking sheet.
- When all the baklava rolls are assembled in the baking sheet, brush with more olive oil and melted butter.
- Bake in the 350 degrees F heated-oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until the baklava rolls brown and crisp (you’re looking for a light gold brown, bottoms may be slightly more brown).
- Remove from oven and dress with at least 1/2 the simple syrup (you can save the rest of the syrup for later use).
- Let bakalva rolls cool completely before serving.
- Fillo (or phyllo) dough must be thawed properly. When thawing, do not remove the fillo from the package, place it in the fridge 12-14 hours before using.
- Make syrup needs to be well concentrated not watery or runny
- Be sure to roll the fillo dough tightly around the cashew filling so that they keep their shape and also to avoid having them burst when adding the syrup
- Make ahead: Baklava rolls are a great dessert to make one night ahead of serving as the syrup will have been well-absorbed. Store in a glass container with a tight lid.
- Recommended for this Recipe: The Fillo Factory Organic Fillo Dough; our Private Reserve Greek extra virgin olive oil and ground green cardamom.
- Adapted from Zahav
Cashew-Filled Baklava Rolls Tutorial
Make syrup. Boil sugar, water and cinnamon stick. Stir in lemon juice and immediately remove from heat. Let set for 15 minutes or so.
Make cashew filling by mixing filling ingredients in a food processor until mixture is finely ground.
Lay 3 sheets of fillo (phyllo dough) and generously brush top with olive oil and melted butter mixture. Cut into 4 equal strips.
Now work with 1 strip. Scoop in cashew filling…
Roll a few times, about 4 to 5, tightly. Slice loose.
Continue the process with this 1 strip and move on to the next. When finished with the first batch, now repeat the process with the next 3 fillo (phyllo sheets).
Assemble the bakalva rolls in oiled sheet pan. Generously brush top with more of the olive oil and butter mixture.
Bake in 350 F degrees heated-oven for 25-30 minutes. Remove from heat when crisp and golden brown, and pour about 1/2 of the syrup on top. Reserve remaining syrup for later. Let baklava rolls cool completely before serving.
*This post is sponsored by The Fillo Factory, makers of quality, gourmet fillo dough. The Fillo Factory dough can be found in different sizes and in Organic White Wheat; Organic Spelt; and Organic Wheat. Vegan; no preservatives; no cholestrol; no trans fat. Available at grocery stores nationwide; click here to find a retailer near you. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that make this site possible.
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