This Baklava recipe uses the same kind of filo pastry that's used for 'veggie or goat puffs'. It looks like samosa dough but it's crispy, light and flaky- the perfect texture for this rich, honey soaked, nut sprinkled, wildly popular middle eastern dish. It crackles as you bite but almost instantly, it just melts in your mouth.
*To make peach or apricot and pecan baklava, use 170 g (6 oz) chopped ready-to-eat dried peaches or apricots in place of the dates and mango, and chopped pecan nuts (or hazelnuts) in place of some or all of the pistachios. Spice with ground ginger, nutmeg or mixed spice instead of cinnamon.
*For pear, hazelnut and almond baklava, make the filling by mixing together 55 g (2 oz) finely chopped hazelnuts, 55 g (2 oz) finely chopped almonds, 85 g (3 oz) chopped ready-to-eat dried pears, 85 g (3 oz) sultanas, 1½ tsp ground mixed spice and the finely grated zest of 1 small lemon.
*Filo pastry is a lower-fat alternative to shortcrust and puff pastries. In 100 g (3½ oz) of filo pastry there are 2 g fat and 275 kcals, whereas the same weight of shortcrust pastry contains 29 g fat and 449 kcals.
*The sweetness of fruit is concentrated in its dried form, so no additional sugar is needed in the filling for this pastry. Dried fruit is also a significant source of dietary fibre.