On a grim strip of Goebenstraße, straddling the gritty border of Schöneberg and Kreuzberg, is a little jewel box of a bakery selling nothing but baklava. I ducked in there yesterday after a day spent criss-crossing town on my bike to finalize the transfer of my driver's license once and for all. After hours on trafficky streets, Pasam Baklava was a silent oasis of calm. It's family-run and all the baklava is made fresh in the back room.
There were eight different kinds of baklava to choose from, filled either with walnuts or pistachios and then varied by whether there was also semolina cooked into the filling, or semolina with milk. Some baklava were made with with kataifi dough instead of phyllo, rolled into little cigars or tiny crescents. I had visions of hosting a Middle Eastern dinner party, with trays and trays of baklava served for dessert.
My favorite was the classic Fistikli baklava, with a simple pistachio filling (seen on the left). Söbiyet, with semolina and pistachios, and the eponymous Pasam Baklava, with a pistachio-semolina-milk filling were pretty good, too, though. The pastry was crisp and fresh, the honey syrup was cool and sweet, the pistachio flavor true and clear.
I especially liked seeing who came in to buy boxes of baklava to take away: a burly piano mover, a construction worker with dirty pants, and then a young man who ordered six pieces, sat down next to me, ate quickly and left again.
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