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4 Things You Didn’t Know About Baklava

Everyone knows Baklava is a delicious dessert, but there are some interesting things one might not know about it.

1. Baklava is the ancestor to the strudel. It really is. Baklava is originally from Turkey, Greece, and the Middle East, but it was brought to Hungary by Turkish invaders during the 16th century. Hungary revised it and made it part of their culture as the strudel.

2. It has strong religious roots.Even though people might not think about it today, Baklava has been associated quite strongly with different religions. In Greece, it is traditionally made with thirty-three layers of dough which each layer representing one year of the life of Christ. It is also a common dessert for Muslims during Ramadan, and Eid ul-Fitr, as well as Pascha and Christmas for Christians.


3. Baklava varies from culture to culture. Baklava you get in a Greek restaurant might be different than that in a Turkish restaurant because every culture adds different things to it. Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Serbia, baklava is made with walnuts and sugar syrup, but in Armenia, it is made with cinnamon and cloves. Israeli baklava has it all. It is usually made with phyllo pastry sheets with pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds, as well as sweet butter, sugar, syrup, cloves, cinnamon, and syrup combined with orange and lemon rind. Jordan and Lebanon both have simpler versions of baklava. Lebanon’s baklava consists of filo pastry filed with nuts and steeped in Attar syrup, which is either orange or rose water, or it is steeped in honey. In Jordan, however, it is made with layers of dough with nuts like pistachios and sugar, honey, or syrup.

4. There is a National Baklava Day
November 17th is the perfect excuse to make and eat some of your favorite baklava because it is National Baklava Day. To celebrate, people either go out to their favorite restaurant for some of their favorite dessert, or the more daring people try making their own. Either way, it is always a good excuse to eat more baklava.