Chard and double cheese baklava with spiced syrup Shavuot

A savoury twist on a Middle Eastern classic which makes a festive showstopper.

  • place PRE 20 minutes
  • place COOK 40-45 minutes
  • place SERVES 6 - 8
  • printicon

The contrast between the sweet syrup and the salty cheese filling is delicious.


  • Separate the stalks from the leaves on the chard. Chop the leaves separately from the stalks (chop these as well) and set aside, separately.
  • In a medium frying pan over medium heat, warm the oil and fry the onion until it starts softening, and then add the chopped stalks and garlic. Fry for 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper (gently on the salt, as you’ll be adding salty cheese) and add the chard leaves. Cook while stirring until the leaves wilt.
  • Transfer to a sieve set over a bowl to cool and drain for about 10 minutes
  • In a separate bowl, mix the two cheeses. Heat your oven to 180°C.
  • To form the baklava: take a 20cm square tin with a large rim. Brush the base and sides with olive oil, and lay your first filo sheet carefully, so it covers all the sides and hangs slightly out of the pan. Brush with olive oil, and cover with another sheet. Repeat with a total of 7 sheets. Use a small knife to trim the dough if you need to.
  • Spread half the cheese mixture evenly on top of the filo, and cover with all of the chard mixture. Finish with the other half of the cheese mixture. Spread so the filling covers the dough evenly and pack it down and smooth the surface.
  • Cover with 7 layers of filo — as you lined the base. Once you are done, score equal sized squares using a small knife. (See image)
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes.
  • Meanwhile make the syrup: place all ingredients in a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.
  • As soon as the pastry is evenly golden, remove from oven. Pour your syrup on top as evenly as possible and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature, scattered with the crushed pistachios.

For the baklava:

400 g swiss chard (or rainbow chard)

3 tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, sliced

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Salt and pepper

200 g hard goat’s cheese, grated

250 g mozzarella, grated

500 g filo pastry

Olive oil for brushing

For the syrup:

Zest and juice from 1 lemon

120 g sugar

120 ml water

1 clove

3 peppercorns

Pinch of cinnamon

1 cardamom pod, crushed

You can substitute the spices for one tea bag of any chai or mulled spices

To garnish:

Crushed pistachios (optional)

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive