Guest Recipe: Saghi Bourma (rolled pastry with walnuts)



Writer and author C.K. Garabed (a.k.a. Charles Kasbarian) shares his version of a traditional Dikranagerdtsi recipe from his Dikranagerd Cookbook, which is currently under development.



Saghi Bourma


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1-1 lb. package filo dough, at room temperature

1 lb. chopped walnuts or pistachio nuts

3-4 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2-3 sticks unsalted butter, melted



Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Be sure filo dough is thawed according to package’s directions.

Lay out filo dough on a work surface. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the dough and then a slightly moistened towel on top of the plastic wrap. This will keep dough from becoming brittle while you work.

Mix the chopped nuts, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Take a single filo sheet and fold it in half. Brush with melted butter, especially the edges. Sprinkle a tablespoon of the nut mixture over dough.

Place dowel on top of dough at the end closest to you, and loosely roll dowel away from you. (What is a dowel? A wooden dowel, about 3/8“ in diameter and 18“ long, the kind that you can purchase at any home improvement center, is the key to shaping bourma.)

With one hand on either end of dough, squeeze inward toward the middle, crinkling dough. Gently slide dough off the dowel, and place on a greased baking sheet.

Continue to do this until all filo sheets and filling are used. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until bourma is golden brown. Cool completely. Once bourma is cooled, drizzle with simple syrup before serving.

Yield: Makes approximately 3 dozen.


Simple Syrup:

2 cups sugar

1 cup water

1 tablespoon lemon juice


Make the simple syrup by bringing the sugar and water to a boil, stirring. Add lemon juice, and stir again. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and liquid reduces by a third, about 10 to 12 minutes. The syrup should coat the back of a spoon. Cool until ready to use.



For recipes by C.K. Kasbarian, see the Dikranagerd Mystique Armenian Cookbook:


*This recipe is a reproduction of a classic bourma recipe that appears at website created by the late Arpie Vartanesian, and is published with the approval of Robyn and Doug Kalajian. For a useful how-to-make bourma video featuring the late Arpie Vartanesian, go to:

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