Baklav Rounds -- recipe as it appear in 2012 Taste of Home Christmas cookbook edition

My complimentary copy of Taste of Home’s 2012Christmas Cookbook arrived about a month ago. A recipe I submitted appears on p. 121 and I am posting it below. It is a recipe that I prepared for a Christmas tea at the Kirby House restaurant several years ago.
Baklav Rounds
Prep: 40 min.   Bake: 20 min. + standind  
Yield: 32 cookies

In need of a sweet treat that I could prepare ahead, I streamlined a recipe I found online. These crispy, flaky little rounds were the result. They were a big hit at an elegant tea I catered. Meta West * Abilene, Kansas                                                           
1 cup suagr
¾ cup water
10 orange peel strips (1 to 3 inches)

   1½ cups walnut pieces
   ½  cup  slivered almonds
   ¼ cup sugar
   1 teaspoon almond extract
   ½  teaspoon ground cinnamon 
   ½  teaspoon ground cloves

18 sheets phyllo (fillo) dough (14-inch x 9-inch sheet size)
¾ cup butter, melted

     In a large saucepan, bring the sugar, water and orange rind (or substitute orange syrup); bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until thickened. Strain and discard peel; set aside.
     In food processor, combine the  walnuts, almonds, sugar, almond extract, cinnamon and cloves; process until finely chopped.
     Place one sheet of phyllo on work surface, brush with butter. (Keep remaining phyllo covered with plastic wrap and a damp towel to prevent it from drying out.) Sprinkle with about 1/3 cup of the nut mixture. Repeat layers twice.
     Roll up jelly-roll style, starting with a long side. Brush roll with butter. Trim edges. Cut into 16 slices, about ¾ in. each. Repeat with ramining phyllo, butter and filling.
     Bake in 350 oven for 10 minutes, Gently turn cookies over; bake 10-15 mintues longer or until golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wireracks over waxed paper.
     Spoon half of the syrup over cookies. Let stand for 15 minutes. Drizzle with remaining syrup. Cool completely.

TO MAKE AHEAD: Prepare as direted. Freeze in a single layer on sawec paper-lined baking sheet. Once frozen, package in freezer bags, separating layers with waxed paper. Theaw in a single layer before serving.

Links to my other recipes for appeared in previous Taste of Home’s holiday cookbook:
2010 edition — Mini Cheese Balls

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