Pistachio and Hazelnut Briouate

Do you know the feeling when you discover that you’ve just made your actual favourite-most delicious-cookie-in the entire world taste a zillion times better? That’s a very special feeling and it doesn’t happen everyday. That’s how I felt the first time I tasted my pistachio and hazelnut briouates. It made me feel like dancing and jumping around. Seriously. 

I always loved the almond ones, my mum used to make them only during Ramadan when we were kids. I remember getting very excited every time Ramadan would approach because I will get to sneak in the kitchen and eat my favourite cookies whenever I want.

A few weeks ago I was about to make some almond briouates and I decided to jazz up the recipe a little bit and use pistachios and hazelnuts instead of almonds. I knew the result couldn’t taste bad, because *hello*, pistachios, hazelnuts and honey? Can’t be a bad combination!

The result tastes amazing, think: if a baklava and an almond briouat would have a baby the result would be these delicious pistachio and hazelnut briouates.

They are just succulent. They taste a bit like pistachio and a bit like hazelnut, they are lightly fragrant, beautifully coated in honey, crunchy on the outside and will literally melt in your mouth! A party for your senses.  

Pistachio and Hazelnut briouates

INGREDIENTS

Makes 25 small briouates

  • 150 gr blanched hazelnuts
  • 150 gr unsalted shelled pistachios
  • 80 gr caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons orange blossom water, divided
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground dried ginger 
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 30 gr room temperature unsalted butter
  • 20 gr unsalted butter melted
  • 200 gr filo pastry
  • 300 gr honey
  • Ground nuts or chopped dried fruits for decoration

METHOD

• Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F).

• Place the blanched hazelnuts in a baking tray and bake in the oven until lightly tan, about 10 to 15 min (middle shelve). Give the hazelnuts a good stir halfway through cooking.

• In a nut grinder or a food processor transfer the roasted hazelnuts, the pistachios, the caster sugar, 2 tablespoons orange blossom water, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Process until finely ground or until the nuts start looking like a rough paste.

• Transfer the nut mixture in a bowl and add 30 gr room temperature butter. Mix until the ingredients are combined all together and knead to a solid mass.

• Unroll the filo and cut the pastry lengthways into 6 cm large and 30 cm long rectangles. Use a sharp knife to cut the pastry and keep the filo rectangles covered with a damp towel until ready to use to prevent from drying out.

• On a work surface, place a filo rectangle and brush it with melted butter. Top the corner of the rectangle with a spoonful of pistachio and hazelnut paste and fold to form a triangle, up to the right and left, until a brioua (singular of briouate) is formed.

• Repeat until you’ve exhausted all the nut paste.

• Brush the small briouate with melted butter and place in the oven to cook for 10 to 12 min until golden.

• Meanwhile heat the honey with 1 tablespoon of orange blossom water. Avoid burning by controlling the heat (once the the honey is foamy you should reduce the heat).

• Once the briouate are baked and golden, immediately transfer them to the simmering honey and soak the pastries for 2 to 3 minutes (flip the briouate if necessary).

• Move to a flat dish to cool before serving. Decorate with ground nuts and/or chopped dried fruits.

Notes

• If you wish to make this recipe vegan (dairy free) use the same quantities of coconut oil instead of butter. 

• You should be able to close the pastry with the melted butter brushed on the filo pastry, however if you struggle to do so, use an egg yolk.