My all-time favorite stop in Machane Yehuda and in the new Sarona Market in Tel Aviv is Halva Kingdom. I think I have sampled all 60 flavors, or maybe that’s just the dream. This business was founded in 1947 by the grandfather of the current shop owner, Eli Maman. After the expulsion of Jews from the Old City of Jerusalem, the family moved the shop to Machane Yehuda Market. The recipe of their famous halvah is from Morocco, and it is hand-made with traditional methods from organic sesame seeds imported from Ethiopia.
This recipe, with its addition of halvah to baklava, is another gem that I learned at Te’amim Cooking School in Jerusalem. The richness that the halvah adds to the baklava is outrageous.
- Cook Time
- Prep Time
- 15 sheets (from a 1-pound box) phyllo dough, defrosted overnight in the refrigerator
- ½ cup canola oil
- 1 cup roasted pistachios
- 1 cup roasted almonds
- 1 cup roasted pecans
- 1 pound halvah, chopped
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ cup honey
- 2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a jellyroll pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
2. Prepare the filling: Place the pistachios, almonds, pecans, halvah, and vanilla into the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal “S” blade. Pulse until ground but not a paste. Set aside.
3. Prepare the syrup: Place the sugar, honey, water, and lemon juice into a medium pot. Over medium heat, bring to just a boil. Turn down to a simmer; cook for 10 minutes. Set aside.
4. Place a sheet of phyllo lengthwise on the work surface. Brush with canola oil. Top with another layer of phyllo. Brush with canola. Top with a third layer of phyllo and oil. Roll all four edges ½-inch inward to make a frame. Brush rolled edges with oil.
5. Spread a thick layer of the nut filling over the phyllo. Starting with a short end, roll up, jellyroll fashion; transfer to prepared sheet. Repeat, making 4 more rolled logs. Brush the logs with oil. Using a serrated knife, cut 4 diagonal slits across the top of each log.
6. Bake, uncovered, for 12 minutes, or until golden. Remove from oven and immediately spoon the syrup over the logs. Slice each log into 4-5 slices. Serve 2 slices to a plate. Drizzle with more syrup around the plate.
Recipe posted with permission from Kosher By Design Brings It Home: picture-perfect food inspired by my travels, by Susie Fishbein