Serves a crowd
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 2 hours
1 cup|250 grams plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
⅛ teaspoon ground saffron
¼ cup|60 ml rosewater
2 cups|250 grams shelled pistachios, finely ground
1 ½ cups|170 grams walnuts, finely ground
1 cup|225 grams pitted and finely chopped Medjool dates
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
16 tablespoons|226 grams unsalted butter, melted
1 pound|450 grams phyllo dough, defrosted and cut into 9-inch-by-13-inch sheets
dried rose petals, for garnish (optional)
- In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup of the sugar with 1 cup|250 ml water. Bring to a boil over high, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer until the sugar has dissolved, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the saffron and remove from the heat. Infuse for 30 minutes, then stir in the rosewater. Strain, discarding the saffron threads, and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the remaining 3 tablespoons sugar with 1 ½ cups|185 grams of the pistachios, the walnuts, dates, and cardamom.
- Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly brush the inside of a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish with some of the butter. Fit one sheet of the phyllo dough in the baking dish and brush the top with butter. Repeat layering with phyllo sheet and butter for 4 more layers. You should have 5 sheets of folded phyllo dough total in the baking dish.
- Spread ⅓ of the nut mixture evenly over the phyllo dough. Repeat step 3 with 5 more layers of phyllo dough and another layer of the nuts 2 more times. Finish with a final 5 layers of buttered phyllo dough. You should have 4 layers of phyllo dough and 3 layers of nuts.
- Brush the top layer of phyllo with more butter and, using a knife, cut across the dough to make a diamond pattern. Bake until lightly golden, about 50 minutes. Pour the syrup over the top and turn off the oven. Place the baghlava back in the oven for about 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and sprinkle with the remaining pistachios and the rose petals, if using. Cool completely before serving.
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