Boorma is Armenian paklava that is rolled instead of layered. When you bite into it, you will initially get a crunch from the layers of phyllo dough and then you get a burst of butter and just a bit of syrup. This is one of my favorites.
1 package #4 phyllo dough
1 lb. (4 sticks) butter, clarified and kept very hot on the stove
For the filling:
3 cups very finely ground walnuts
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
For the syrup:
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
You will also need a dowel approximately a foot long and 1 inch in diameter and a wet towel.
To make the filling, just combine the walnuts, sugar and cinnamon.
To make the syrup, boil the sugar and water for 10 minutes. Then add the lemon juice. The lemon juice keeps the sugar from re-crystalizing and gives it flavor too.
Preheat your oven to 350 F
Here comes the tricky part – actually making the boorma. It takes trial and error and it can be frustrating but the end result is so very much worth it!
Defrost your phyllo dough in the refrigerator overnight and take it out a few hours before you need it. Open it up, unfold it gently and lay it flat on a cutting board or smooth work surface. Cover with a wet towel briefly.
Next, take the dowel and roll just ONE layer of phyllo dough onto it very slowly and gently. Some of the walnuts may poke through and tear the dough but just keep rolling. It’ll be fine. Roll all the way up:
Now comes the very, very tricky part. Take your fingers and put them kind of up and under the ends of the roll and scrunch it to make a wrinkly log like this:
Grab with your hand, holding it together and place on a sheet pan (pan must have sides – see below). You should be able to fit two to a row:
Be sure to put the damp towel over the phyllo dough before you add the filling each time so it doesn’t get dry. If the phone rings or something distracts you, get that towel over the phyllo dough or it will dry out and be impossible to work with.
You should fill up 1 1/2 – 2 sheet pans this way. Once they’re all lined up, make sure the clarified butter is extremely hot but not boiling. Take a large spoon and drizzle the boorma generously with the hot butter. It should sizzle audibly. Make sure to get every part of it with butter, including the ends.
Carefully transfer to a 350 F oven and bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. The timing really depends on your oven. Watch it closely because it goes from golden to burnt very quickly!
Take it out of the oven and get a big metal bowl, pot or pan with high sides. Carefully tilt the sheet pan and drain all of the excess butter. Please note, you can re-use this butter for the next sheet pan.
Let the boorma cool completely, then drizzle with just a little syrup to taste. My family likes just a tiny touch of syrup, but other people like a lot. I suggest starting out with just a little bit, tasting and then adding more if it’s not sweet enough.
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