Baklava rolls....

These crisp nut filled rolls are simply delicious, you get all the traditional baklava flavors minus all the extra syrup blaklava tends to soak up. The filling is made a little bit different than any other Baklava cigar recipes you may find online. Most fillings are dry and don't require any wet ingredients in the mix but not mine. I like to add a few tablespoons of honey to really hold the mix together. Who wants to bite into a pastry and have the nut filling fall down all over your shirt. Not I. When using filo pastry it's very important to keep the unused sheets covered so that they don't dry out. Filo sheets vary in size from one country to the other, I'm using Middle Eastern fillo sheets which are a little bigger than those found in the USA. But really the size of the Baklava roll is entirely up to you. The size of strips I used in this recipe were approximately 5x12 inches. The correct technique is to brush each sheet with butter before placing one sheet on top of the other but I found that taking 2 sheets at a time works just as good. All you have to do is brush one side of the 2 sheets, flip it over and brush the other side and voala you just saved you a few seconds in time.

1 pack filo dough (thawed if frozen)
1 cup melted butter
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons thick clear honey
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon powder
4 cups wallnuts toasted and finely chopped(you can use pistachios, almonds, pecans, or hazelnuts)

For the syrup
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 cinnamon stick (optional)
4 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 strips thinly pared lemon rind

To make the filling place the honey, lemon juice, and sugar in a pan and heat gently stirring continuously until it has completely dissolved. Stir in the nuts and cinnamon until the mix is evenly coated with the honey and sugar mix. Set aside. Meanwhile cut your filo pastry in (5x12 inch strips) Take two strips at a time and lighly brush each side with butter. Place 1 tablespoon of your nut filling at the base of your strips, fold the corners in diagonally to inclose the filling. Roll the pastry up in a cigar shape making sure its tighly closed. Brush the ends with more butter to prevent the cigar from opening. Place join side down on a non stick baking sheet. Repeat the process until you have used up the entire nut filling. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until crisp and golden.

Make your syrup either before you begin to make your rolls or while they are in the oven. Combine your sugar and water in a medium pan over medium heat. Bring the mix to a light boil or until the sugar has completely dissolved. Add your lemon rind, honey, and cinnamon stick and turn the heat down to low for 5 to 7 minutes. Once the syrup is ready stir in the lemon juice and set aside. The syrup can be poured over the ciggars once the have lighly cooled down or you can drizzle it over when ready to serve. If you're a fan or soaked pastries cut each ciggar in half and pour the syrup over, leave the ciggars until the syrup has soaked into each ciggar.

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