Ring in the New Year with Champagne Lavender Baklava

Ring in the New Year with Champagne Lavender Baklava

As the new year approaches, it is time to start planning your celebration. Thankfully we’ve got Chef J around to supply us with the perfect recipe to accompany our champagne toasts: Champagne Lavender Baklava! This beautiful and delicious dish is a great way to say goodbye to 2014 and ring in the New Year in style!

The year is almost over! Hopefully it was all that you dreamed it would be — but if not, at least you get to try again. ‘Tis the season to reflect on the ups and downs of the previous twelve months and set new goals for the new year in an effort to create a better life and a better world. But mostly it’s the time to pop some corks and scream as a giant, glittery ball drops. Whether your New Year’s celebration is going to be decked out in tuxedos and little black dresses or pajamas and fuzzy slippers, there will probably be a hefty amount of gluttony …before signing up for that gym membership that you are totally going to use this year. Viva la resolution! So before we all start writing checks that we know we can’t cash, let’s enjoy the one last day to get away with – nay, embrace –  the social acceptance of overeating and public drunkenness (besides Thanksgiving, St. Patrick’s Day, The Superbowl, Cinco de Mayo, President’s Day…)!

When I ring in the new year this season (in pajamas, of course) I will be doing so with hefty amounts of alcohol and sugar, so it’s the perfect excuse to make one of my favorite wine-based desserts.

Champagne Lavender Baklava is a delicious treat that is relatively easy to make and will surely stand out in a crowd this New Year’s Eve!

Champagne Lavender Baklava 

  • 1 package phyllo dough
  • 1½ cup sugar
  • 2 TBS lavender
  • ½ t cardamom
  • 8 oz. melted butter
  • 1½ cups finely chopped hazelnuts, toasted
  • 2 cups Champagne (or less expensive sparkling wine)

In a sauce pot mix 1 cup of sugar and the champagne and bring to a simmer.
Simmer for 15-20 minutes until syrup is thick. Remove from heat and let cool.

In a mortar and pestle, crush lavender and cardamom; throw it in a food processor with remaining cup of sugar and blend until fine.
Mix ½ cup of the sugar mixture with the hazelnuts and set aside.
In a buttered, high-sided pan or baking dish, begin layering sheets of phyllo dough and coating with melted butter.
Every two or three layers sprinkle liberally with the sugar/lavender/cardamom blend.
After using a third of the phyllo, sprinkle half of the hazelnuts on with the sugar. Do this again after using the next third of the dough.
Continue layering and sprinkling then give the top an extra coat of butter.
Cut baklava into the classic diamonds or triangles and bake at 350° for 35 – 45 minutes or until golden brown.
Pour the syrup over the hot baklava.
Let cool, loosely covered for at LEAST 24 hours.
Top with whipped cream or dip in coffee or cocoa.

Printer friendly recipe: Champagne Lavender Baklava

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