• In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain.
• Coarsely crumble bacon into a food processor; add almonds and dates. Cover and process until finely chopped.
• Brush a 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan with some of the butter. Unroll phyllo dough; trim to fit into pan.
• Layer five sheets of phyllo dough in prepared pan, brushing each with butter. (Keep remaining dough covered with plastic wrap and a damp towel to prevent it from drying out.) Sprinkle with a third of the bacon mixture. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining phyllo dough, brushing each sheet with butter.
• Using a sharp knife, cut into 1-1/2-in. diamond shapes. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
• Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the remaining ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Pour over warm baklava. Cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Yield: 36 servings.
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