Sticky and sweet like baklava. This dessert has the addition of a grated apple and cinnamon added to the nuts and drizzled with lemon and honey. The lemon syrup is poured immediately once it comes out of the oven and then absorbs while it cools. You can make this as straight logs (more like a nut strudel) or a circle. I have made it into a zigzag so it fits into my glass pan. I prefer to use glass for this kind of dessert because you can cut directly in the pan without damaging it. I also use a mild buttery olive oil instead of butter to brush the sheets of phyllo. The lemon goes so nicely with the apple and walnut.
You will need:
- 2 cups ground walnuts (I always store whole nuts in the freezer and grind in the food processor rather than buy ground nuts- they go rancid quickly and fresh is important.
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- 1 apple – peeled and grated (add the liquid and pulp)
- 6 sheets of thawed phyllo dough
- approximately 1/4-1/3 cup mild fruity olive oil for brushing – I used Domaine Oltremonti-Corsica
- 1/2 cup honey (any kind you like)
- 1/2 a lemon zested finely & then juiced
- 1/4 cup water
Step 1: I store nuts in the freezer to keep them fresh. Nuts go rancid very quickly so taste the ones you are using to make sure they are not bad. I grind nuts in the food processor to get a fine/medium course consistency. Gather all your other ingredients. Make sure your phyllo is thawed according to directions on the box. I do mine in the fridge.
Step 2: peel an apple and grate it right to the core. Take the apple and any juices and add to a bowl. Add nuts, cinnamon, sugar and salt. Mix to combine.
Step 3: brush each of 3 sheets of phyllo dough with a thin layer of mild extra virgin olive oil or butter. I love that olive oil is delicious and so much healthier. Stack and brush each sheet with oil. 3 sheets makes 1 log.
Step 4: take half of the mixture and add along the longer side of the dough. Roll up. Repeat.
Step 5: brush oil or butter on bottom of a pan or baking dish. Leave logs straight or coil or form into a circle. Brush with more olive oil and you could sprinkle a bit more of the nut mixture if you like. I like the dessert to almost fill the baking dish so when you add the syrup it is contained near the roll and will absorb into it. So, whatever dish you use should not be much larger than the dessert.
Bake 25-30 minutes in a 350 degree oven until browned.
Step 6: in a small pan heat honey until just warmed almost to the boil. Turn off heat and zest 1/2 lemon and add fresh lemon juice and water. Stir. As soon as the dessert is out of the over carefully pour over the entire dessert. It will bubble and sizzle and you will think there is too much syrup but, it will absorb as it cools. Once cooled slice and serve with hot tea!! YUM.
Lasts on the counter for a day or two.