Thursday, 30 July 2015

Chocolate and Coffee Baklava

The Great British Bake Off returns next week for another fantastic series that I’m really excited for. So for every week until the sad end of the series, I’ll be baking lots of recipes from the show :D

To celebrate the new series, I looked over the recipes from last season (available on, and decided to try one of the recipes baked by last year's winner (Nancy) in the semi-final. They had to make baklava (traditionally layered filo filled with nuts, and soaked in a honey/sugar syrup), and one of the kinds Nancy made were chocolate and coffee.

I had two attempts. In the first, I tried to follow the recipe implicitly...but the result did not go well - way too bitter :( So I did lots of alterations, which I've amassed and written the recipe below.
After my modifications, this recipe is perfect as an after dinner snack :D Not for kids, but one adults will love (provided you're a fan of coffee that is!).
Makes 1 20cm tray of baklava (12 individual pieces)


  • 6 sheets of filo pastry, halved
  • 100g butter (or margarine), melted
  • 125g roasted chopped hazelnuts
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp instant espresso coffee (dissolved in 200ml hot water)
  • 50g chocolate chips
  • 30g demerara sugar
  • 300ml orange juice
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp orange blossom extract
  • 1 orange, zest only


1. Make the filling by mixing the nuts, cocoa, coffee, chocolate, and demerera sugar.
Version with instant dried coffee and milk chocolate...
Adding the liquid coffee made the mixture firmer.

2. Preheat the oven to 200c/180c fan/ gas mark 6. Grease a 20 x 20 cm square baking tin 
with butter.

3. Brush the first sheet of filo with melted butter (this is easiest to do using a pastry brush). Lay the second layer on top, and brush over more melted butter.

4. Spread over a third of the filling (it will look sparse but don't worry!). Then add the third layer of filo, and brush with butter. Finally add the fourth layer of filo, brush with butter, and roll into a sausage.

5. Cut the filo "sausage" into four, and place in the greased baking tray. Repeat to make two more filo rolls (to end up with 12 pieces of baklava).

6. Brush the tops of the baklava with more melted butter.

7. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 180c/160c fan/gas 4, and bake for another 10 - 15 minutes. The top will become golden brown.

8. Whilst the baklava is cooking, make the syrup. Heat the orange juice and caster sugar, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and cook for around 5 minutes, until the temperature of the syrup is 108c/226F. Remove from the heat, stir in the orange blossom extract, and leave to cool.

When the syrup boils, it froths massively!! So be sure to use a large pan to prevent
spillage onto your hob.

9. Once the baklava has baked, scatter the orange zest on top and pour over the cooled syrup. Leave to cool completely before serving.

10. Devour.

Note 1: The ingredient, according to the website is instant coffee...but it doesn't state whether it was the dried coffee, or after being made up with water (so liquid).  In my first attempt, I used dried coffee - this ended up being very bitter and overpowering! 
So for my second attempt, I instead made up the coffee in 200ml hot water, then used 2 tablespoons of it. The result was 500 x better!!

**Note 2:  I used milk chocolate chips in my first attempt at the recipe, and white chocolate in the second. I personally preferred the white chocolate, but if you have a less sweet tooth than me, milk chocolate did work well too.

Note 3: Nancy's recipe said to use star anise in the filling. However, I didn't understand this, as chomping down on a piece of star anise is really disgusting...I used it in my first attempt in the syrup, but found this to be overpowering. Therefore in my second attempt, I left out the star anise, and was very happy doing so.

Hope that got you stoked for the Great British Bake Off!!! Are there any recipes from previous series you would like me to try? 
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