Chocolate Baklava

Author: Sarah Bates | The Chef Next Door

Serves 15

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1 cup chocolate spread {such as Hershey's Chocolate Spread}

1 1/3 cups chopped toasted walnuts

2/3 cups chopped toasted hazelnuts

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided

20 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed

1 stick unsalted butter, melted

3/4 cup honey

1/2 cup water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Add the chocolate spread to a small bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds, or until melted. Combine the walnuts, hazelnuts, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a medium bowl. 

Lightly coat a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Working with 1 sheet of phyllo at a time, place a sheet lengthwise in the bottom of the prepared pan, then lightly brush with butter. Repeat procedure with 4 more phyllo sheets and butter. Drizzle about 1/3 cup of the melted chocolate spread over the phyllo, then sprinkle evenly with about 1/2 cup of the nut mixture. Repeat this procedure twice with phyllo, butter, chocolate spread, and nut mixture. Top the last layer of nut mixture with the remaining 5 sheets of phyllo, each buttered, and press gently into the pan.

Using a sharp knife, make 3 horizontal cuts and 5 vertical cuts to form 15 squares. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the phyllo is golden brown on top.

While the baklava is cooking, make the syrup. Combine the honey, water, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon in a small saucepan. Cook over low heat until the honey dissolves. Increase the heat to medium and  cook, without stirring, until a thermometer registers 230 degrees (should take about 10 minutes). Remove from the heat and cover. 

Remove the baklava from the oven and immediately pour the honey mixture over the top. Allow it to cool completely before serving. Leftovers can be kept covered, at room temperature.

Bon Appétit!