(Much!) Easier Spanakopita

Easier spanakopita in a pan

Spanakopita is traditionally made by buttering layer after layer of phyllo. No more! Try my (much!) easier Spanakopita using my super simple hack. This is a recipe my Sitto learned at her Greek Orthodox Church and shared with me. The original includes the best of everything, and my original post went to the heart of…

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Olive Oil Baklawa with Pistachios

Pistachio baklawa made with olive oil, cut in pieces in the pan

Olive oil baklawa is a fabulous alternative to classic baklawa, or baklava — the Mediterranean pastry traditionally drenched in butter and flower water syrup. How exciting to have a vegan baklawa (vegan baklava) option that tastes so very good! I won’t say that olive oil baklawa tastes exactly the same as if you’ve made your…

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Lebanese Almond Baklawa Fingers Recipe

Almond baklawa fingers in a pan, Maureen Abood

These Lebanese almond baklawa fingers are delicate, crisp, and fun to make. They’re flavored with aromatic orange blossom syrup. One of the great things about all of the baking and exchanging of cookies this time of year is finding out about what is treasured enough to get baked up in other people’s kitchens every Christmas.…

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Sitto’s Spanakopita Recipe

Maybe it’s the cold weather hitting that makes me think even more about my Sitto, who grew up on a rugged farm in Nebraska a century ago. This was serious pioneer life, a life she described to us often in captivating stories. She told us how they’d harvest every fall, and how exciting it was…

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Lebanese Knafeh Jibneh with Orange Blossom Syrup

Knafeh on a plate with pistachios

One of the greatest of all Lebanese pastries is knafeh jibneh with orange blossom syrup. Knafeh is shredded phyllo dough (find it in Middle Eastern markets) which is filled here with a wonderful cheese blend for a melty, salty-sweet (mostly sweet . . . ) pastry. The Lebanese eat knafeh traditionally for breakfast in a…

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Ingredient: Phyllo dough

Phyllo dough for Lebanese baklawa, Maureen Abood

Perhaps it’s my love of paper that inspires my fascination with phyllo dough. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Either way, phyllo dough is a beautiful, delicate pastry that requires a lot of tender loving care when handled. Made with flour, water, and oil, phyllo is an unleavened (no yeast) paper-thin dough that is…

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