When I first spotted vegan phyllo dough at the market I was very excited. The odd thing is that I’ve never made anything with phyllo or had a desire to use it. My mom made baklava when I was a kid and it seemed way too labor intensive. But, I do love a good vegan baking challenge so I bought a package. After scouring recipes using phyllo, I chose one that sounded relatively simple and looked like a nice snack.
For this recipe I didn’t need to veganize or high altitude it. I figured the experimenting would be the phyllo dough itself as the difficulty would be the correct and quick handling of the dough. The most important thing I learned was to have a partner handy to brush the sheets with oil while you assemble the dish. The dough is finicky and dries out quickly, but having help made it go more smoothly. It also made preparation more fun.
The treat is messy to eat because the phyllo wants to crumble when you take a bite. The best part of this experiment was watching my husband take an entire piece and shove it in his mouth in order to be neater. I wish the illustrating photo could have been of that moment but I was too busy laughing.
Chocolate Phyllo Crispies adapted from Native Foods Celebration Cookbook
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate
2 ounces dark chocolate
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups almonds, roasted and ground
zest of 1/2 an orange
1/4 cup canola oil
12 sheets phyllo dough, defrosted per package directions
Preheat oven to 350F. Chop chocolate into 1/2” pieces and mix in blender with sugar. Combine chocolate mixture in a bowl with almonds and orange zest. Brush bottom of a 9×13” pan with oil. Cut phyllo sheets to fit the pan.
Place a sheet of phyllo brushed with oil in the pan. Sprinkle chocolate-almond mixture lightly over top. Alternate phyllo sheet (with brushed oil), then chocolate, until all phyllo and mixture are used. Cut into squares or triangles with a sharp knife. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
Until next time, happy baking!