Sari Burma, or Burma Baklava, is a rolled baklava featuring the same beloved flavors and ingredients as its layered cousin. They are relatively easier to assemble than traditional baklava, and are packed with even more cinnamon walnut filling!
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 ½-by-14 ½-inch pan.
Prepare the filling by mixing together the walnuts, sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
Open the package of phyllo dough and lay it out on the table or a clean work surface. Cover with a clean cloth when not using it so it doesn't dry out. Take one sheet of dough at a time and fold it in half width-wise (like a book).
Brush/blot lightly with butter. Sprinkle about 3 tablespoons of filling over most of the dough, leaving about 3 inches free at the top edge, and about ½ an inch free at the other 3 edges. Fold 1 inch over at the bottom and place the dowel here. Roll up from this end, finishing at the filling-free end.
Set the seam side down. Push the 2 ends together toward the center using both hands, giving the dough a crinkled look. Remove the dowel and place the sari burma on the greased pan. Repeat with the rest of the dough and then brush the tops of all of them liberally with melted clarified butter. Trim ½ inch from each end of every sari burma, and then cut the center part in half creating 2 pieces per roll (each about 3-inches long) with the trimmings on either side.
Bake for about 35 to 45 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely before moving on.
Prepare the syrup by dissolving the sugar in the water over high heat. Bring to a boil then add the lemon juice and cloves, lower the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and rest for about 17 or 18 minutes until the syrup is warm, but not too hot (about 160 to 165°F).
Discard the cloves and ladle the very warm syrup over the pan of sari burma and let it soak until mostly absorbed, about 1 hour. There may still be some syrup left in the pan, but most of it should soak into the dough. Use a sharp knife and go over all the previous cuts, making sure the sari burma is cut all the way through before serving. Store at room temperature.
Note that the brand of phyllo dough you use may vary greatly in the number of phyllo sheets (especially if the dimensions are slightly different than what I have noted above or they are a different thickness). The amount of filling is perfect for 18 sheets of phyllo. If your package contains more sheets, you will need more filling or will need to add a bit less filling to each sheet to have enough for all of them. Please look at what your package says for approximate number of sheets before getting started.
If you only have a 9-by-13-inch pan you can use this but trim/slice your sari burma before putting them in the pan so they can all fit, then discard the trimmings in this case. If using a package with more sheets of phyllo than about 18, you can use a half sheet pan for this recipe to have enough room.
No wooden dowel? You can try using the handle end of a wooden spoon to roll these up. You may need to stick the spoon end off the edge of your cutting board/table so it doesn't get stuck as you roll your burma.
If you use store-bought ghee (clarified butter), reduce the amount of butter in the recipe to about 4 ½ ounces (by weight) ghee/clarified butter to make up for the evaporation of water and skimming of milk solids of clarifying it yourself.
It is very important that the sari burma and syrup are 2 different temperatures. Some people pour cold syrup over hot sari burma but we always do the opposite with cooled sari burma and hot syrup. If the sari burma and syrup are both hot, the result will be mushy. If they are both cold, the syrup won't soak into the sari burma at all.