Coffee Zone’s Baklava

food writing, Vox, what I'm eating

These baked goods are worth the mess

Baklava is a traditional Middle Eastern pastry made of thin phyllo dough, honey and walnuts. Coffee Zone Manager Issan Yanis says the restaurant used to make homemade baklava until it got too time-consuming to make on site, but he continues to make it at home for his family. He describes it as a “crunchy, sweet dessert filled with nuts.”

The standard recipe Yanis uses requires individually stacked layers of phyllo dough, each brushed with melted butter. Then a filling mixture of finely crushed nuts, sugar and cinnamon is added before repeating the process on top. Baklava is pre-sliced before going into the oven at 350 degrees and baked until golden brown. A honey drizzle tops the dish to create a sweet, sticky finish.

When baked, the phyllo dough puffs up and becomes delicate and crispy. Honey and crushed nuts add a candy-like sweetness similar to peanut brittle or toffee. Make sure to sit down and enjoy your baklava, as each bite comes with a sea of phyllo flakes. You’ll want to keep some napkins on hand.

Osama Yanis, Coffee Zone owner and Issan’s brother, says he likes to eat baklava in the morning with a cup of coffee.

— Claire Lardizabal

Walnut Baklava | Coffee Zone | 449-8215 | 11 N. 9th St. | $2.80

Source: Sticky treats in Columbia

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