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Himalayan Balsam Baklava



300g filo pastry sheets

100g unsalted butter

150g himalayan balsam seeds (or a mixture of himalayan balsam seeds, walnuts, and pistachios)

25g honey (or dandelion syrup)

1/4 tsp salt

100g sugar

50g honey (or dandelion syrup)

100ml water

spices to taste (lemon or orange peel, cinnamon, cardamom, orange blossom water, or wild spices like hogweed seeds and clove root)

Melt the butter and use a little to brush a rectangular cake pan or oven dish.  Cut the pastry sheets in half to fit your dish and lay the first in the dish and brush with butter.  Continue until half are used.

Crush himalayan balsam seeds into smaller chunks and mix with 25g honey and 1/4 tsp of salt.  Spread on the layered half of the filo sheets and press down firmly. Then cover with alternating layers of the remaining filo pastry and melted butter.  Spread with remaining butter and score pastry deeply into rhomboids or triangles or squares.  Bake at 150 degrees Celsius for an hour.

Cook sugar, 50g honey, water, and spices for about ten minutes into a syrup, then pour warm syrup over hot baklava and allow to fully cool.  Cut into shapes and serve or store air tight.

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