Monday, February 28, 2011

Savory Baklava

My favorite thing about having a smart phone is being able to look up recipes while I am out; no more aimlessly buying things at the grocery and then realizing all I can make are tacos when I get home! After work I entered a few things into an app, I wanted to make a main dish vegetarian casserole. This recipe was the first that came up from the search and I was sold! The grocery store didn't have parsnips which the original recipe calls for and I added a couple of things (surprise!). Also, the explanation of how to assemble the dish was kind of complicated, so I just made mine up along the way. The vegetables were sweet and caramelized from the roasting and the flakey phyllo dough was the perfect wrapper for them.

Adapted slightly from

Roasted Winter Vegetable Baklava

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (2 ounces), toasted
  • 1/4 cup fine dry plain bread crumbs, toasted
  • 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 2 medium fennel bulbs, trimmed, reserving fronds, bulbs halved and sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/2 pound carrots (3 medium), sliced diagonally 1/3 inch thick
  • 1 large onion, halved and sliced
  • 2 whole cloves garlic
  • 1/4-1/2 pound fresh spinach
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 2/3 cup vegetable stock
  • 1/3 cup chopped dill
  • 8 (17-by 12-inch) phyllo sheets, thawed if frozen


Preheat oven to 425°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.

Slice potatoes 1/4 inch thick. Divide all vegetables (except spinach) between 2 large 4-sided sheet pans and toss each pan of vegetables with 3 tablespoons oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

Roast vegetables, stirring and switching position of pans halfway through, until softened and golden brown in spots, 30 to 35 minutes. Leave oven on with 1 rack in middle.

Add 1/3 cup vegetable stock to each pan of vegetables and stir and scrape up brown bits from bottom. Chop 1/4 cup fennel fronds. Combine all vegetables in 1 pan and toss with fennel fronds and dill.

Brush baking dish with some of remaining olive oil. Cover stack of phyllo sheets with plastic wrap and a damp kitchen towel. Keeping remaining phyllo covered and working quickly, place 1 sheet in bottom of baking dish letting the phyllo overhang the sides of the dish, then gently brush with some oil (butter is better here!) and sprinkle with pine nuts and breadcrumbs. Place another phyllo sheet on top and repeat brushing and sprinkling. Top with a third sheet and brush with oil.

Spoon vegetables and spinach into phyllo shell. Fold overhang toward center over filling (it will not completely cover the vegetables) and brush edge with butter. Brush remaining 2 sheets of phyllo with butter and arrange on top of filling.

Bake in middle of oven until phyllo is deep golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 5 minutes before serving.

In other news, our beer is totally dead! The yeast never got going properly and we had no idea what to do to make them happy. We are going to order a few more ingredient kits and give it another try. Kyle and I had a little moment of mourning last week when we realized if our beer had worked, it would have been ready on that very day. At least there are plenty of delicious brews we can drown our sorrows in while we work on the next batch.

Friday, February 4, 2011