I used to love the non-raw version of baklava. There was just something so delicious about the sweet walnut filling laced with cinnamon that made me happy. I can remember my Mom and I going to a local Middle Eastern restaurant and getting it for dessert, me being so excited about it! I made a couple raw versions last year, one more traditional, and one a bit non-traditional using pistachios in place of the walnuts and adding in cranberries for a seasonal twist. I was thinking about how delicious those were last week when I was paging through my old blog recipes and I decided I was hungry for baklava again and needed to make it. However, I did not want to go through the trouble of making the "filo dough" part in the dehydrator so I thought about what I had on hand that I could replace it with. Apple slices! It dawned on me, and it would be perfect with the cinnamon and walnuts! I even added a bit of apple to the filling to make it even better.
My being lazy made for a great dessert this time. The crisp apple slices were even better than the raw pastry I made last time, and it was delicious! I gave some to my Mother who is a baklava fan as well (and my biggest food critic) and she loved it! Win all around, and this literally took me less than 10 minutes to make with the apple slices already on hand. If you do not have apple slices on hand and think it sounds like too much trouble to make some for this, think again. It is 2 minutes hands on the night before, and if you have extra after you make the baklava they make a delicious snack.
4 dried apple slices
1/4 cup raw walnuts
2 Tbsp large flake coconut
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp raw coconut nectar, raw amber agave nectar or raw local honey
a good pinch sea salt
8 dried apple slices*
raw coconut nectar, raw amber agave nectar or raw local honey
For the filling, combine all ingredients in the food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped and combined (but very chunky still). To assemble, place an apple slice on each of 2 plates. Top each with about 1 Tbsp filling, then a little drizzle of nectar, then an apple slice, then 1 Tbsp filling, then a little more nectar, then another apple slice, then 1 Tbsp filling, then nectar, then an apple slice. Drizzle with a little more nectar, and enjoy!
*To make apple slices, slice one large sweet apple (it is important that it is flavorful because it makes for tastier dried apples) very thinly and spread slices out on the dehydrator sheet. Dehydrate for about 24 hours until crispy.