Soaked in honey. What is the difference between Turkish baklava and Armenian and Balkan baklava


It oozes with honey or sugary rose water, there is nothing sweeter and more beautiful - this is baklava. The queen of the Middle East and Mediterranean countries, it is made in the Caucasus, Turkey, the Balkans.

The idea is simple: thin dough, layered with nuts and soaked in honey or sugar syrup. The perfect accompaniment to a cup of oriental coffee.

The main ingredient of baklava is nuts, the main version of the origin of the name of baklava connects the delicacy with the Arabic word for hazelnut, but it is possible that the name of baklava comes from the Middle Mongolian baɣla, which means “to wrap”.

The Turks claim that it was they who invented this dessert. By the way, in Turkey it is called baklava. Flaky sweetness appeared during the reign of Mehmed Fatih, the Conqueror, in the 15th century, at least the first recorded recipe for baklava dates back to this time.

Most likely, the sweetness appeared earlier. Most likely, the sweet spread from Turkey to the Balkans along with the Ottoman conquests. But who invented it is not exactly established. Many peoples argue for the right to be considered the inventors of baklava: Greeks, Turks, Armenians, Arabs, Caucasians, Jews... For all these peoples, baklava is a national dessert.

And in all countries it is done slightly differently.

“Firstly, our Turkish dessert is called baklava,” says Mehmet Chalyshkan, brand chef of the MEAT_COIN restaurant, “in other countries, baklava. A distinctive feature of Turkish baklava is that it is only handmade and Turkish pistachios are used in large quantities.”

Volodymyr Bogozhavets, head chef of the Maroon restaurant, agrees with his colleague:

“Turkish baklava differs from Azerbaijani and Armenian ones in that it has a very thin dough. Azerbaijani and Armenian baklava have fewer layers and the dough is denser in texture. They also make syrup differently. The Turks make sherbet with lemon, while the Armenians and Azerbaijanis make it with honey.”

Baklava is one of the main sweets in the countries that were part of the Ottoman Empire: in Greece, Bulgaria, for example. “Bulgarians add rose water with honey to baklava,” says Sergey Navasartov, chef of the Noah’s Ark restaurant. “Greeks add yogurt to the dough.”

Sochi, Baku and Yerevan baklava are made from thick dough. “They include yeast, butter, eggs,” Sergei Navasartov lists. “Although we also have a lean version of baklava, it is made from a very thin dough, similar to filo dough, and butter is replaced with vegetable oil. Yerevan baklava contains only walnuts and cardamom in large quantities. And in Baku baklava, as well as in Turkish - pistachios. And rose water can also be added there. Iranian baklava is similar to Turkish, with thin dough and pistachios.”

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