So it became my quest to make it myself. I tried the Greek method of rolling out the dough to paper-thin sheets, but nothing I made came even close to the real thing. Besides, my arms were tired! But what other method could I use?
|One of the first. Note that it's a bit thick in areas.|
Time-consuming? Certainly. Worth it? YES.
In the meantime, if you strike out on your own, I'll leave you with the lessons I learned while making warka:
1: Don't use a silicone brush. The "bristles" don't catch or spread the batter in a gentle enough fashion and you'll end up with cooked splatter instead of thin pastry sheets. (I used a wad of cheesecloth soaked in the batter and dabbed on gently all over in a circle; this is the Method in Development.)
2: Don't mix up the cooked side with the uncooked side!
3: Use your fingers to pluck the cooked pastry off the hot griddle. You may burn yourself, but no spatula will be gentle enough to get it off in one piece. It needs to be your fingers.
4: Use plenty of olive oil to coat both the sheets and the parchment paper between them. Being skimpy here leads to sticking.
5: Since plenty of olive oil was used to prevent sticking during storage, use less butter in the baklava than normal or it'll get a bit greasy.
6: Sit on a bench or tall chair while working or your feet will holler later.