Nutty Baklava

Baklava is so decadent and heavenly.  Nutty, sweet, gooey, crunchy all at the same time.

MeasuringSunshine-Baklava is so decadent and heavenly.  Nutty, sweet, gooey, crunchy all at the same time.

Homemade baklava  is so much better than store bought in my book.  You have so many choices in the ingredients you can put in the baklava.  You can use your favorite nut, I have used walnuts, almonds and Brazil nuts.  The type of honey, type of cinnamon or other  spices.

You will need:

9×13 baking pan
1 package of frozen filo dough-defrost in refrigerator 2 days before making baklava
1 lb. of nuts, walnuts, brazil nuts, almonds, or pretty much any other nut you would like to use.(chopped finely)
1 cup melted butter give or take- have extra butter on hand if needed
1 Tbsp of cinnamon, and any other spices you might want to add. (I will also use fresh nutmeg, powdered clove, you can also use pumpkin pie spice)
Honey syrup- recipe follows

Syrup ingredients:
1 cup honey
1 cup white sugar
1/3 cup water
2 cinnamon sticks or 1 tsp of cinnamon

Bring to boil ,lower temperature and simmer for 15 min. Stir during cooking process.  After the 15 minutes turn off heat and let cool.

To put together the baklava:
Brush bottom of 9 x 13 pan with some of the melted butter.  Add layer of filo, brush with butter, add layer of filo, brush with butter, do this 4 more times.  Add layer of chopped nuts and cinnamon.  Add 5-6 more layers of the filo brushed with the melted butter.
When you have used all the nuts and cinnamon- add 7-8 layers of the butter filo to finish off the top.

Put pan into freezer for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Pull pan from freezer, get a very sharp knife and cut long diagonal cuts through the dough.  When you have completed the cuts it will look like a pan of diamonds.
Bake for about 1 hour- it will look nice a golden color.
Take out of oven.  Pour syrup gently over the top of the baklava.  I normally pour about half and wait 5-10 minutes and then pour the remaining syrup over the top.

NuttyBaklava-MeasurningSunshine-Baklava is so decadent and heavenly.  Nutty, sweet, gooey, crunchy all at the same time.  You have so many choices in the ingredients you can put into it.

Tips:

Make sure filo is completely thawed.
Keep filo covered with damp towel while working with it.
Either precut filo to fit the pan or just fold the filo to fit. ( this is what I do- just adds additional layers of buttery filo.)
Freezing pan after layering will help to firm up the layers before you cut them- this is not required.
Let sit for several hours for syrup to soak it completing and baklava is cooled.
Some people leave baklava out for several days, I however, will usually store covered in the refrigerator.

Chewy Chocolate Cookies

This cookie has always been one of the favorite chocolate cookies at every event.
Perfect for any holiday or celebration.
It’s chewy, chocolaty, and melts in your mouth.
chewy chocolate cookies-This cookie has always been one of the favorite chocolate cookies at every event. It's chewy, chocolaty, and melts in your mouth.
You can do so many variations with this cookie.
I have rolled them in a ball and then nuts, or powdered sugar before baking.
I have topped them with walnuts, pecan, almonds, kisses, m&m’s, and sprinkles.
This is a recipe adapted from a community cookbook from 1984 when my daughter was in the Daisy’s.
chewy chocolate cookies-This cookie has always been one of the favorite chocolate cookies at every event. It's chewy, chocolaty, and melts in your mouth.

1 cup butter, and 1/4 cup shortening (you can use all butter, but I like the texture this way)
2 cups sugar
2 eggs, large
2 tsp vanilla paste (you can use a nut flavoring if you want- I have used almond and walnut extract)
2 cups flour
3/4 cup of special dark baking chocolate( I use Hershey’s)
1 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
optional:  1 cup chopped nuts, dark chocolate pieces, or wherever your imagination takes you.

Cream softened butter, shortening and sugar.  Just until mixed.
Add eggs, and vanilla, beat
Combine all dry ingredients in separate bowl.
Then mix dry ingredient into wet ingredients.
If adding nuts or chocolates do it after everything is mixed together.
chewy chocolate cookies-This cookie has always been one of the favorite chocolate cookies at every event. It's chewy, chocolaty, and melts in your mouth.
Drop by spoonful onto greased cookie sheet, or roll into a ball.
Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes- they will look a little puffy and under cooked- but take them  out anyway.
Let them cool on cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes before taking off sheet to cool the rest of the way on a rack.

Quick Easy Fudge

This fudge takes all of 10 minutes to get mixed and in the frig.  Quick easy fudge, this fudge take so little time and effort to make and tastes so smooth and creamy.
You can adjust to suit your tastes or the season for giving as gifts.

fudge-Quick easy fudge, this fudge take so little time and effort to make and tastes so smooth and creamy. You can adjust to suit your tastes or the season for giving as gifts.

You can add nuts or not, you can add vanilla, peppermint, rum flavorings or not.
You will need:
14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
7oz. marshmallow cream
3 cups chocolate chips.  I use 2cups milk chocolate and 1 cup of semi sweet.  Any mixture works.  You can even use bitter chocolate if that is your favorite.
1-2 tsp of vanilla paste- you can use extract if that’s what you have. (you can also substitute peppermint, rum or other  flavoring- less amount if using peppermint or it will taste like toothpaste)
Optional items: any type of nut, or mini marshmallows, broken candy canes, chopped candy bars or candy.

fudge-product-2

Start with a heavy bottom sauce pan.  Add milk, marshmallow cream and chips………. melt and mix together over low heat.  When all is mixed and melted add flavoring.

 

Have ready a 8×8 square pan, I usually line with wax paper.
When its all mixed pour into the prepared pan.
Put in refrigerator to harden.

fudge-Quick easy fudge, this fudge take so little time and effort to make and tastes so smooth and creamy. You can adjust to suit your tastes or the season for giving as gifts.

 

quickfudge-Quick easy fudge, this fudge take so little time and effort to make and tastes so smooth and creamy. You can adjust to suit your tastes or the season for giving as gifts.

Teacake Holiday Cookies

These cookies are quick, easy and are eggless.  You can add almonds, walnuts, pistachio’s or any other nut you prefer.  I personally like them with walnuts.
You can call them Swedish/Russian teacakes, snowballs, Mexican wedding cake cookies they are all pretty similar.
I have been using this recipe since 1982ish.  Its from a community cookbook in the Bay area.

These cookies are quick, easy and are eggless.  You can add almonds, walnuts, pistachio's or any other nut you prefer.  I personally like them with walnuts. You can call them Swedish/Russian teacakes, snowballs, Mexican wedding cake cookies they are all pretty similar.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Cream together:
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup Powdered sugar
2 tsp. vanilla paste ( or vanilla extract)

Add:
2 cups flour
1/4 tsp. salt
After everything is mixed well.

Add:
1 cup of whichever nut you decided to use.
You can refrigerate at this point or start rolling  dough into 1 inch balls.

These cookies are quick, easy and are eggless.  You can add almonds, walnuts, pistachio's or any other nut you prefer.  I personally like them with walnuts. You can call them Swedish/Russian teacakes, snowballs, Mexican wedding cake cookies they are all pretty similar.

 

Bake in preheated oven about 15 minutes.  They should not be brown all over just around the bottom edge of the cookie that is against the pan.
Pour powdered sugar into a medium bowl, while the cookies are still hot roll in sugar and set aside to cool.
After they cool, reroll in sugar again.

 

This recipe makes 40 -1 inch cookies.