baklava

Braided Baklava Brioche

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

You know that phrase, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”? Can we just agree that those words are completely, 100% untrue? At 31 years old, I feel pretty old some days, and if you tell me I’ve grown and learned as much life-changing newness as I will be in my lifetime, I give up now. That would be the worst. I don’t want to exist in a world where the curtain has closed on new possibilities.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

I think the statement about the dog and his tricks is useful in some scenarios. Like changing people? We just can’t do that. Or becoming a prima ballerina for the NYC Ballet at age 92? Not going to happen. But I do believe that when it comes to ourselves- our own talents, our hopes, our pursuits, our whatever- we can be some old as dirt humans who are still be capable of achieving. The possibility all rests within our resolve and the willingness to work our fanny off.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

My kids have been useful in teaching me a few new tricks. Motherhood constantly stretches me beyond what I previously believed I was capable of, and there are days where I reflect on what I’ve accomplished and beam with pride. Baking and managing this business do the same thing. Yes, there are some skills and experiences that feel a lot like standing at the base of Mt. Everest, but I think we can completely void the notion that we’ve missed our opportunity for greatness just by strapping on our boots and tiptoeing onto the mountain. Sometimes we need to just go for it.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

So let this be your motivational speech for the week: don’t be afraid to try. Let’s be a people that are constantly evolving, always learning, and never afraid to step into something new. Let’s go after both the things within our reach and the stuff that feels way too far up the side of the mountain. We can be a bunch of old dogs learning tricks.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

Braided Baklava Brioche

This braided baklava brioche is not for the faint of heart. Yeast breads like this can be an animal for beginners, and the filling and braiding of this kind of loaf can be super tricky as well. But the reward, a sweetened and lightly spiced bread filled with nuts, honey, and loads of flavor, is totally worth it in every respect.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

I’m sharing today’s recipe for this baklava brioche with my friends at Kerrygold! I always reserve their top-notch butter for my favorite, most worthy recipes, and this baklava bread is no exception. Unsalted sweet cream butter helps to transform this bread into a tender, flaky loaf that is full of uncompromised flavor.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

Making the Brioche

To make this baklava brioche, we start with the dough. Yeast is dissolved in a bit of warm milk and brown sugar before eggs and honey are added. The dry ingredients, flour, cinnamon, and salt, come next, and are followed up by an incorporating of softened butter. The dough is extremely moist, kinda stretchy, and so delicious that you may end up nibbling on little raw bits before it’s baked. No judgment.

Once the dough for this baklava brioche has risen for the first time, we can prepare the filling. The rolled-out dough is slathered in butter and coated in a sprinkle of sugar, spices, pistachios, and walnuts. Roll the covered dough tightly, cut the log lengthwise to expose the filled innards, and spiral the two pieces together to create and braided wreath of dough. Allow the dough to rest in a warm spot of your kitchen while it rises for a final time.

Braided Baklava Brioche by Wood and Spoon. This is a wreath loaf inspired by the meditteranean dessert filled with cinnamon, honey, walnuts, and pistachios. The yeast dough is sweetened with brown sugar and honey syrup and the crunchy nut filling adds flavor and texture. Heat up warm slices as a dessert or for breakfast. Learn more and how to braid the bread on thewoodandspoon.com

Fresh from the oven, this baklava bread boasts all of the nutty, spiced flavors of traditional baklava. I love to serve this baklava brioche as a warm breakfast slice, but I think you’d find it to be a suitable dessert or snack as well. This recipe yields a massive loaf of bread, so if someone gets the gumption to test it out as two smaller loaves, I’d love to hear your results! Either way, give this baklava brioche a try and let me know what you think! Many thanks to Kerrygold for sponsoring this baklava brioche post, and many thanks to you all for supporting brands that make Wood & Spoon possible. Happy baking!

If you like this baklava bread you should check out:

Orange Swirl Bread

Peppermint Bark Bread

Cinnamon Bread

Raisin Swirl Bread

Chocolate Peanut Butter Babka

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Braided Baklava Brioche

This braided baklava brioche is loaded with pistachios, walnuts, honey, and cinnamon- all the flavors of traditional baklava!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 360
  • Yield: 1 Loaf
  • Category: Bread

Ingredients

For the dough:

  • ½ cup (120 gm) whole milk, lukewarm
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 21/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 11/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (290 gm) all-purpose flour, plus more
  • ½ cup (115 gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the filling:

  • ½ cup (115 gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ½ cup (100 gm) brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • ½ cup shelled pistachios, finely chopped
  • ½ cup shelled walnuts, finely chopped

For the syrup:

  • ¼ cup (60 gm) water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Instructions

  1. Pour the milk into the bowl of a stand mixer and stir in the brown sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over top and allow it to dissolve completely, about 5 minutes. Stir as needed to get some of the yeast on top dry.
  2. Once dissolved, stir in the honey, eggs, salt, cinnamon, and 1 cup of flour. Once combined, put the flat beater on the stand mixer and stir in the remaining flour. With the mixer on medium speed begin to add the butter a tablespoon at a time until it is combined, and then continue to beat for 4-5 more minutes until the dough becomes slightly stringy/ stretchy on the beater. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Place the finished bowl in a large lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow it to rise and double in size in a warm spot of your kitchen ( I let mine rise by the oven) for about an hour and a half.
  3. Once the dough has doubled in size, prepare the filling. Stir together the softened butter with the brown sugar, cinnamon and lemon zest. Roll the dough out on a floured surface into a 12”x15” rectangle. Spread the mixture evenly over the dough and sprinkle both varieties of nuts on top. Starting with one of the long ends, tightly roll the dough and pinch the final edge together to seal. Flip the dough log over so the seam is on the bottom and use a large sharp knife (like a chef’s knife) to slice down the center of the length of the dough leaving 1” piece of dough uncut up top. This top piece of dough will hold the two halves of dough together. Twist the two dough tails so the innards are facing upwards and then twist around each other to the ends. Bring the tail to meet the head and wrap one on top of another so that you make and O-shaped wreath of dough. Place the wreath into a lightly greased 10” dish or skillet and cover with plastic wrap to rise a second time while you preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Once puffed (about 35-40 minutes) remove the plastic wrap and bake in the preheated oven for about 30 or so minutes. In the meantime, make the syrup.
  5. Combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to a bubble, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Once the top of the bread has tanned, the dough in the center looks dry, and the internal temp reads 180 degrees, remove the pan from the oven and immediately pour the syrup on top of the hot bread. Set aside to cool some prior to eating.

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Pistachio Honey Bars

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

We have been running these past few weeks. I mean, r-u-n-n-i-n-g. Life has full of so many fun opportunities lately that we have found ourselves flying across the country, out of town, and by the seat of our pants more often than not. It feels like we pack and drive and drink and laugh before throwing a handful of dirty undies into the laundry and start all over again a few days later. I’m not complaining, but to be frank, we need to catch our breath. We need a few minutes to Netflix and chill, maybe even nibble on treats like these pistachio honey bars.

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

You Can’t Pin Me Down

When Brett and I got married, I vowed to seek out adventure. I saw myself as this carefree little pigeon that he had somehow managed to catch, and I determined to not let him pin my wings down. This little bird would not be tamed; I was going to fly.

Fast forward several months later. That ultra-cool, ahead-of-her-time pigeon (yes, this analogy is really getting out of hand) gets knocked up, and all of a sudden, someone’s gotta be mama bird. Someone has to plant their stretch-marked hind parts on some eggs and tend to the nest.

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Parenthood has a way of dismantling everything you thought you knew about yourself. It’s a wind tunnel of exhaustion and work that forces even the strongest set of wings to the ground. Traveling, free time, and life outside of the nest seems all but impossible in the debris of nap schedules and diapers that swirls around you. For the past three years, we have hoofed it, working hard to escape regularly for days alone. That time away, while exhilarating and broadening, has been taxing, and we now find ourselves picking through the evenings and minutes remaining in between trips, wishing we had more. More time with our children. More time in our own bed. More time at home.

Home vs. Away

So that begs the questions: how do you fit a love of traveling into a life that’s running over with the needs of your children? Is there a healthy balance between quality time with your people and seeking out adventures? How do we say “Yes!” to the opportunities we meet in life without saying “No!” to the more important things that beg for our time and affections?

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

In a few weeks, Brett and I plan to travel to Charleston, South Carolina for the Saveur Blog Awards. For the first time, we are trading our fancy hotel reservation for a larger Airbnb that can fit our crew. It may end in sleeplessness and disaster, but we are determined to make this beautiful, crazy busy, here and there life of ours work. We need a balance.

I’m soon going to share some photos from our recent trip to Portland, but for now, let’s settle in at home. Let’s grab a book and some yoga pants and cozy up with this week’s easy, comfy, weeknight dessert: pistachio honey bars.

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Honey Pistachio Bars

These bars started off as a spin on baklava. I adore the sweet and flaky Middle Eastern dessert and wanted to make it more accessible for the home baker. These pistachio honey bars certainly aren’t baklava, but the flavors are there. Pistachios and walnuts, stirred with a gooey brown sugar and honey sauce, are baked together on a zesty crust of lemon shortbread. The bars are spiced with cinnamon and cardamom and drizzled with white chocolate for an extra measure of sweet. Lucky for you, the ingredients are few and quick to assemble, so you’ll spend less time baking and more time sharing these decadent treats. Let’s talk about how to make them.

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Making the Bars

The recipe for these pistachio honey bars comes from my favorite derby pie bar recipe. The shortbread crust is simple, just some sugar, butter, flour, and cornstarch scented with a sprinkle of lemon zest. First, work the dry ingredients with the butter, pressing it into the bottom of a foil-lined pan. Afterwards, bake the crust in the oven until firm while you prepare the filling.

In the meantime, chop the nuts and add to a pan of melted butter, honey, and sugar. Cook the mixture until bubbly and slightly thickened. Next, add to it some spices and a bit of cream and spoon the mixture on top of the baked shortbread crust. Finally, the whole thing baked for an additional few minutes before allowing it to cool.

The Topping

Once the pistachio honey bars have set up completely, remove them from the pan and drizzle with the melted white chocolate. This step is completely optional (even though you and I both know that it’s actually not). Load up on that white chocolate and garnish with additional chopped pistachios, if desired. Cut into small bars (these guys are RICH!) and share with your lovies as quickly as possible. They will absolutely adore you. You are the dessert king/queen, okay?

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

All in all, these pistachio honey bars are a sweet and simple way to celebrate being at home. They’re simple, yet deliciously decadent- the perfect way to ring in this new week. Give them a try and let me know what you think! I’d also love to hear how you and your family travel. Seriously, DOES IT GET EASIER!?!?! (Please say yes.) Finally, if you’re interested in traveling with children and reading about how one family made a worldwide journey their story for a whole year, check out the book “At Home in the World” by Tsh Oxenreider. I’ve just finished it, thus the sudden impulse to bring my children everywhere. Love y’all and happy Monday!

Pistachio Honey Bars Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. These are a simple, press in lemon shortbread crust topped with a gooey nutty filling. Walnuts, pistachios, honey and brown sugar make up these bars which are also spiced with cinnamon and cardamom - just like baklava! The recipe is simple, make ahead, and a sweet Southern take on the middle eastern / Greek classic. Drizzle with a white chocolate topping, for a fancy take on these easy cookies. Find out how to bake them and more on the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

If you love these pistachio honey bars, you should try:

Pecan Toffee Bars

Blueberry Lemon Bars

Derby Pie Bars 

Honey Mascarpone Tart

Honey Nut Ice Cream

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Pistachio Honey Bars

With a lemon shortbread crust and a sweet and spiced honey nut filling, these pistachio honey bars are like baklava in cookie form!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • ¾ cup (90 gm) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup (35 gm) corn starch
  • ½ cup (55 gm) confectioner’s sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, finely grated
  • ½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, cold and cut into teaspoon sized pieces

For the filling:

  • ½ cup (113 gm) unsalted butter
  • ½ cup (100 gm) packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup (85 gm) honey
  • 1 cup (120 gm) finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup (100 gm) finely chopped pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Instructions

To prepare the crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9” square baking pan with aluminum foil with enough overhang on each side to easily remove the bars from the pan once baked. Spray with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, stir together the flour, corn starch, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Using a pastry cutter or the backs of two forks, cut the diced butter into the dry ingredients until it becomes a coarse meal consistency with pea-sized clumps. Bake in the preheat oven for about 15 minutes, or until the crust is set and then edges have just started to turn golden. Do not overbake. Set aside the cooked crust while you prepare the filling.

To prepare the filling:

  1. Combine the butter, brown sugar, and honey in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring until the butter and sugar have dissolved. Once melted and no graininess from the sugar exists any longer, increase the heat to medium and bring to a boil, boiling for 3 minutes. After three minutes have passed, remove the pan from the heat. Add the chopped walnuts, pistachios, heavy cream, and spices to a medium sized bowl and stir in the butter mixture until evenly combined.
  2. Spread the warm filling over the crust and smooth out. Bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until the edges and parts of the center are bubbling and the bars have turned caramel in color. Allow the bars to cool completely prior to removing from the pan (you can speed this process up in the fridge). Remove from pan by pulling out the foil liner. Gently melt the white chocolate chips on a double boiler sitting over LOW heat. Be careful to not melt at too high of heat or your white chocolate may seize. Drizzle over the top of the bars. Cut into 16 bars and serve at room temp.

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