What could be better than baklava? How about baklava + Taza Chocolate = Choklava! Ground almonds and Chocolate Covered Cacao Nibs are densely packed between delicate sheets of phyllo dough, all soaked in a cinnamon syrup. This showstopper dessert takes patience and finesse, but it’s well worth the effort.
1 8 oz can of Chocolate Covered Nibs
1 cups whole roasted almonds
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
2 ¼ cups sugar
20 sheets (~1lb) phyllo dough, defrosted
2 sticks (8oz) unsalted butter, melted
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 stick cinnamon
9” pie dish or 9”x13” baking dish
Food processor (seriously-- it’ll make life easier)
1. In a food processor, chop almonds and cacao nibs until almonds are broken down into a chunky meal. Add ¼ cup sugar and ground cinnamon. Stir to combine and set filling aside.
2. Heat oven to 300°. Unwrap phyllo and flatten on a smooth surface. Cover phyllo sheets with a sheet of parchment paper or cling wrap and then a slightly damp dish towel to prevent sheets from drying out. Be sure to set aside 2-4 sheets of phyllo dough for the top layer.
3. Grease pan with some of the melted butter. Place 1 sheet of phyllo in pan and brush with butter. Lay a second sheet of phyllo over first sheet, brush with butter, and repeat 6 more times. After brushing the 8th layer with butter, evenly sprinkle with about ½ cup of filling.
4. Top filling layer with another 4 sheets of phyllo dough, brushing with butter in between each sheet, followed by another ½ cup of filling. Repeat until you run out of phyllo or filling, but be sure to end on a filling layer. Use reserved phyllo sheets, separated only by butter, to cover top.
5. Brush top with butter. Arrange pan so short side faces you. Cut across baklava with a serrated knife at about 2″ intervals. Get creative with how you cut it, but be sure to cut it at this point because it will be difficult to get clean cuts after the phyllo dough bakes. Sprinkle top with water, cover with 2 sheets of parchment paper, and bake until golden, about 1 1⁄2 hours.
6. Heat remaining 2 cups sugar, juice, cinnamon stick, and 1 cups water in a saucepan over medium heat; cook until sugar dissolves, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, and discard cinnamon stick; let cool./p>
7. Remove baklava from oven. Discard parchment paper, then pour syrup over entire surface. Tilt pan so syrup reaches all corners, then set baklava aside to cool for 2 hours. Using a sharp knife, cut along the pre-bake cuts to separate pieces. Serve at room temperature.
8. Choclava can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 month at room temperature, up to 2 months chilled, and up to 5 months frozen.