Source: 'Falastin' - Sami Tamimi & Tara Wigley
Put 55ml of water and the sugar into a saucepan and place on a medium-high heat. Mix well, then, once it starts boiling, add the lemon juice. Simmer gently for 2 minutes, then stir in the rose water and remove from the heat straightaway. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 180C fan.
For the filling, put the cream cheese, cornflour, sugar, salt and mastic (or vanilla bean paste) into a medium bowl and whisk well to combine.
To assemble, spread one filo sheet out on a work surface and brush with some of the melted butter. Top with another sheet and brush with butter again. Repeat the process until you have 5 layers evenly brushed with butter. As always when working with filo, you’ll need to work fast when you start brushing and folding: the pastry will dry out if you don’t. You should have used about a quarter of the melted butter at this stage.
Using sharp scissors or pizza cutter (my favourite way of cutting filo), cut the layered sheet of pastry into 6 squares, all 12cm x 12cm – you’ll need to trim the sheets to get even squares. Taking one square at a time, spoon about 35g (or 2 tablespoons) of the thick filling into the centre of each square, leaving a 2-3cm border around the edge. Fold the pastry diagonally in half to form a triangle, press on the edges without reaching the filling (so that it stays well sealed within the pastry), then brush all over with more butter. Once all 6 triangle pastries are on a parchment-lined baking tray, repeat the whole process with the remaining pastry, butter and filling (I used a slightly different approach to the folding by the way, check my Instagram for a video)
Once all 12 pastries are made up and spread on two parchment-lined baking trays, bake for 22 minutes or until golden and crisp: some of them will pop open, but that’s OK. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Drizzle over the syrup, sprinkle over the crushed pistachios and pomegranate kernels, if using, and serve.