I feel like January could be one of my favorite months of the year, and not because it’s raining the whole time and it’s cold and grey outside. But I am trying to enjoy every magical little moment it has to offer like steamy hot tea, warm boots, oversized sweaters, cozy binge watching evenings and all the juicy oranges, not forgetting my favorite blood oranges.
With all the oranges waiting to be transformed, I knew a baklava was in order, especially one with chocolate (a few days ago I read that chocolate is on track to go extinct in 40 years, oh no!!). I think a chocolate baklava is one of the most delicious desserts. This version involves a fudgy chocolate orange & nut filling that is drenched in a boozy honey orange syrup. The key to the filling is to put the oranges into a food processor, blend and then combine with the batter, the filling comes out incredibly soft and citrusy.
Let the baklava stand overnight and serve the next day for a dessert you won’t soon forget. Everyone I’ve served it to has quickly fallen in love.
chocolate orange filling
90 g sugar
100 g flour
3 organic eggs
270 g dark chocolate, finely chopped
250 g butter, at room temperature
70 g pistachios
70 g almonds
70 g walnuts
2 oranges + zest from one of them
honey orange syrup
3 tablespoons Cointreau
150 g honey
300 ml freshly squeezed orange juice + zest from one of the oranges
50 ml water
about 400 g of phyllo dough
100 g butter
Place the nuts in the food processor and blend.
Peel the oranges, cut into pieces and put into a food processor and blend.
Beat the eggs and sugar in a large mixing bowl, add flour and butter, beat until smooth. Add chopped chocolate, nuts, orange zest and the blended oranges. Stir until combined.
Melt 100 g butter and brush a 30 x 22 cm baking dish with some of the melted butter. Cut the phyllo dough to the size of your baking dish. Layer 6 pieces of phyllo in the dish, brushing each piece with butter before adding the next. Gently spread 1/2 of the chocolate-orange filling. Layer 5 pieces of phyllo, brushing each with butter before adding the next. Spread with the remaining chocolate-orange filling. Now add the final layer of phyllo dough. Layer on 5 pieces of phyllo on top, brushing each with butter before adding the next, including the top layer.
Heat the oven to 180°C. With a sharp knife, cut the dough into a diamond pattern, cutting almost to the bottom layer. Place in the oven, reduce the temperature to 170°C and bake for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the syrup, add the ingredients for the orange syrup in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Pour the syrup over the warm baklava and let soak, for at least 4 hours or overnight. Sprinkle with pistachios, enjoy!