Baklava Gavar is a special type of baklava that originates from the region of the same name in Armenia. It is among the most famous desserts throughout Armenia. It has been inscribed on the Armenian list of intangible cultural heritage, emphasizing its significance in Armenian cuisine.
The basic ingredients of Baklava Gavar include a large amount of specially cleaned and dried walnuts, the best mountain honey and plenty of melted butter. Baklava has approximately 25 layers and the honey is added while it’s still hot, which reportedly helps to preserve its taste and quality for a longer time.
Turkish baklava probably made its way to the city of Gavar, located on the western shore of Lake Sevan, with Armenian refugees. They fled from the Ottoman Empire around 1830. Many people are involved in the preparation of the dessert, each responsible for a specific task. Some sort the nuts, some prepare the dough, and some cover the baklava during baking to prevent it from burning on top.
If you’ve ever admired the art of Italian “pizzaiolos“, I recommend watching the following video capturing the process of making Baklava Gavar:
Pakhlava, bakhlava, and baklava
In Armenia, you can encounter baklava under several similar names. In Eastern Armenian, the dessert is called “pakhlava”, while in Western Armenian it’s referred to as “bakhlava”. Large parts of present-day Turkey were once part of Armenia, and Turkish doesn’t have the “kh” sound. Thus, “bakhlava” became “baklava”. This name was then adopted by other languages and nations.
I had the opportunity to taste baklava from the city of Gavar at Tavern Yerevan Khorenatsi restaurant. The portion cost 1,300 AMD, which is approximately 3.20 EUR.