These rolled baklava bites are a traditional Greek sweet called Saragli. In one small bite, you can taste the nuts, cinnamon, clove wrapped inside a crunchy filo pastry with sweet syrup. These baklava bites are so yummy that it will take real self-control to just stop at one! They are much easier to prepare than people usually believe, you just need to know a couple of tips that will guarantee the perfect crunchy and syrupy baklava. So stay with me and let’s get started!
Why this recipe works
- Simple ingredients & easy to follow instructions
- You will never get a soggy baklava
- You can use any nuts you like, walnuts, pistachios, almonds
- Tips on how to avoid a watery or hard syrup
Ingredients & How-to
For the filling, I like to use a mix of walnuts and pistachios. You could use just walnuts or a mix of nuts in the same quantity. I then put them in a food processor and grind them enough to break any hard large pieces that might go through the thin filo dough. Then, I mix in the cinnamon, ground clove, breadcrumbs and a little bit of sugar, and the filling for the baklava bites is ready, so simple!
Now it’s time to start rolling. The packet with filo pastry that I usually buy has around 12-13 sheets. Make sure you open the packet when you are ready to start rolling the baklava bites to avoid a dry dough that will easily break. I have a bowl with the melted butter and another one with the filling right next to me so the rolling process only takes a few minutes really. I start by drizzling some butter over the filo pastry with a small brush 2-3 times and then spread around a couple of tablespoons from the filling. You should spread it all over the dough so it’s evenly distributed.
Then I put two wooden sticks in the middle of the filo with the edges out. I fold the filo in the middle so the two skewers are at the bottom end inside the folded filo dough.
Then I start rolling the filo to the other end pressing gently with my fingers. You don’t want to roll it overly tight but also not very loose either. When I reach the other end and all filo is wrapped around the sticks, I gently start pressing from the uncovered end of the sticks towards the middle. You might accidentally prick the roll while pressing but there is no need to worry, it’s still fine.
I carefully remove the two sticks whilst placing the roll on an oven proof dish that I have brushed with some butter at the bottom. Continue with the rest of the filo pastry till it’s all rolled. If you have any leftover filling then you can put it in a bag or a jar and save it for next time or why not use it for my coconut granola recipe. When all baklava rolls are in the tray, I pour over any remaining butter and gently brush it to cover all of the rolls.
Now it’s time for the oven. While my oven is getting preheated to 150°C/300°F, I place the tray with the baklava rolls in the fridge for 5-10 minutes. That will make the butter go hard and it’s easier then to cut the long rolls into individual small bites. Baklava needs to be slowly baked, so be patient whilst in the oven. This will make the filo pastry nice and crunchy.
While the baklava rolls are in the oven baking, it’s time to make the syrup. The syrup needs to be cold when we pour it over the hot baklava, so in this way, it will have enough time to cool down for when we take the baklava rolls out of the oven. I just put all the syrup ingredients into a small pot, the water, sugar, cinnamon stick, whole cloves and honey.
I give it a bit of a stir and then leave it over medium heat till it starts boiling. When the syrup starts boiling and there are loads of bubbles at the top, I remove it from the heat and it’s ready. It usually takes between 5-10 minutes but as every stove is different, all you need to remember is that the syrup is ready when it starts boiling.
When the baklava rolls are ready, I take them out of the oven and immediately pour over the cold syrup. All you need to remember here is, cold syrup over hot baklava! In this way, the baklava rolls will remain crunchy and prevent them from becoming soggy. I leave them for an hour in the tray to soak in all the syrup before serving them.
- Avoid any big hard pieces when chopping your nuts that will result in tearing the filo pastry
- Open the filo pastry packaging when you are ready to start rolling to prevent it from going hard and breaking while rolling
- Put the baklava rolls in the fridge for 10 minutes to get the butter and hard and be easier to cut them into smaller pieces
- Bake the baklava rolls at low temperature to make them nice and crunchy
- Always pour cold syrup over hot baklava to avoid a soggy result
- The syrup is ready when it starts boiling and you see loads of bubbles on the surface
We usually put a couple of baklava rolls on a small plate and serve them with a small fork. This is a type of sweet that we often have with our coffee or tea in the morning or afternoon, but you can also serve it after dinner as a dessert perhaps with a ball of vanilla ice cream.
Leave the baklava rolls uncovered at room temperature for the first day and then you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 10 days if you can resist not eating them of course.
- Why is my baklava soggy? The baklava can get soggy for two reasons. Either you didn’t let it cool down and put it in an airtight container whilst still hot or your syrup wasn’t cold enough when you poured it over the hot baklava.
- What kind of nuts can I use for the baklava rolls? You can use any combination you like. I like to use half walnuts and half pistachios but you could also use almonds or just walnuts.
- How do I know when the baklava syrup is ready? You don’t need to take it off the heat at a specific time as every stove is different. All you need to remember is that when the syrup starts boiling and has loads of bubbles on the surface then it’s ready.
- Why is my filo pastry breaking? Filo pastry is very thin and sensitive so you open the packet the minute you are ready to start working with it. If you have opened it before, then covering it with a towel might help prevent it from breaking when rolling the baklava bites.
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Rolled Baklava Bites - Greek SaragliThese rolled baklava bites or Saragli as we call it in Greek, is a traditional Greek sweet made mainly with filo pastry, nuts and a honey based syrup. They are very easy to prepare, all you need is to be patient while they are in the oven baking. So delicious, nutty and crunchy that no one can resist having only one!
- 250gr (12-13 sheets) filo pastry
- 7oz / 200gr butter
- 3/4 cup (100gr) walnuts
- 3/4 cup (100gr) pistachios
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground clove
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 whole cloves
- 2 tbsp honey
- For the filling, put in a food processor the pistachios and walnuts and chop them until there are not big hard pieces.
- Add the chopped nuts to a bowl and add the sugar, cinnamon, ground clove, breadcrumbs in.
- Melt the butter in the microwave or a small pan. Brush an ovenproof dish with a little bit of the butter.
- Open the filo pastry packaging. With a brush drizzle the top filo pastry with some butter a couple of times.
- Spread a couple of tablespoons from the filling on the filo pastry making sure that it's spread evenly.
- Then put two wooden sticks in the middle of the filo pastry leaving half of each stick outside of the pastry. Fold the pastry in half so the two sticks are at the bottom half inside the fold.
- Start rolling the pastry towards the top around the wooden sticks. Then press both ends towards the middle creating little folds on the filo.
- Carefully place the rolled pastry in the ovenproof dish and remove the two sticks.
- Repeat with the rest of the filo pastry. When all rolls are placed on the tray, drizzle any remaining butter on top and gently brush them.
- Put the tray in the fridge for 10 minutes whilst you preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F.
- Take the tray out of the fridge and cut the rolled baklava into 4 lengthwise to form smaller bites.
- Place it in the oven and bake for 2 hours at 150°C/300°F.
- In the meantime, prepare the syrup. Put in a small pot all ingredients, the water, sugar, cinnamon stick, whole cloves and honey.
- Give it a bit of a stir and then leave it over medium heat.
- When it starts boiling and you see loads of bubbles on the surface, take it off the heat and leave it at the side to cool down.
- When the baklava rolls are ready, take the tray out of the oven and immediately pour over the hot baklava the cold syrup.
- Leave it for an hour to rest and soak the syrup before serving.
If you have any leftover filling, you can store it for next time or use it in my coconut granola recipe. To get a crispy baklava, the syrup needs to be cold and the baklava very hot.
Leave them uncovered for the first day and then store them in an airtight container on the counter top at room temperature for up to 10 days.
Nutrition Info (per serving)
I am not a nutritionist. The nutrition information has been calculated using an on-line calculator, and is intended for information and guidance purposes only. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should consider calculating it yourself, using your preferred tool.