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Middle-Eastern baklava

In the Middle East, baklava is called baklawa. The spelling may be different but the tastes are very similar. The Greeks use honey, while in the Middle East, orange blossom or rosewater is used for the syrup. This delicious dessert may be time consuming, but well worth the effort!

Ingredients - Makes 3 long logs

500g good-quality Turkish delight*
50g almond meal
200g walnuts, finely chopped
2 tsp rosewater
1 tbs lemon juice
1 cup caster sugar
9 sheets filo pastry
100g butter, melted
Rose petals, to garnish
Turkish coffee, to serve

Preheat oven to 190°C.

Cut the Turkish delight into small cubes and place in a bowl with the icing sugar from the box, the almond meal, walnuts, half the rosewater, the lemon juice and half the caster sugar. Stir to combine, then set aside.

Place the remaining caster sugar and 1 cup water in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Decrease heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining rosewater and set aside to cool.

Place 1 sheet of filo on a workbench and brush with butter. Repeat with 2 more sheets. Place a third of the filling along a long end of the buttered pastry, then roll up, twisting the ends to enclose. Brush the top with butter. Repeat with remaining filo and filling to make 3 rolls.

Place on a greased baking tray and bake for 30 minutes. Brush with a little syrup and set aside to cool.

Once cool, slice diagonally and drizzle with the extra syrup. Garnish with the rose petals and serve with Turkish coffee.

* Turkish delight is available from Middle-Eastern stores.

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