Spiced Redlove Apple & Cashew Baklava By James Wong

These exotically spiced cashew pastries, bathed in a scarlet Redlove apple syrup, look so fancy no one would imagine how incredibly simple they are to make.

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups caster sugar
  • 4 Redlove apples
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 250g butter, melted
  • 1 packet filo pastry
  • 150g chopped honey roast cashews
  • 2 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
redlove baklava
james wong

Method:

  • Wash, core & slice the apples finely. Lay these in a bowl and stir in the caster sugar until thoroughly combined. Refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight, until the sugar has drawn much of the water out of the apples, leaving chewy apple pieces floating in a thick red syrup.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C & grease a 17cm x 28cm (11in x 7in) baking tray with butter.
  • Tip the apple / sugar mix into a small saucepan with the cardamom pods and lemon juice, stir well and simmer for 15 -20mins on a medium heat. Strain out the apple pieces and reserve the syrup.
  • Lay two sheets of filo in the tray, buttering the top layer. Repeat until you have a layer 10-sheets-thick.
  • Mix together the nuts, brown sugar and salt & spread the mixture over the pastry in the tray. Arrange the apple pieces over the nuts and sprinkle with the cinnamon.
  • Layer up the remaining sheets on top of the apples, brushing every second sheet with butter, as before.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut a criss-cross pattern into the top layers of the pastry.
  • Place the pastry in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, then lower the oven temperature to 150C and cook for another 30 minutes, or until the pastry is slightly puffed and golden on top.
  • 5 minutes before the pastry is due to be ready, heat the red apple syrup up over a low heat until just before boiling. Pour this over the pastry as soon as it is out of the oven and leave to cool.
  • Cut into small diamond-shaped pieces and serve