Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sugared Rose - The Rose Petal Jam



The rose petal jam is one of my favorite childhood memories - an unforgettable taste that I have spent years hunting for. I tried rose jams from Egypt and Turkey. I tried rose jelly from Normandy. None of them tasted like the one my grandmother used to make.

The rose petals were gathered in summer and turned magically into a rose petal preserve that was later used to fill doughnuts.

We would spend the whole afternoon picking the most fragrant rose petals we were able to find. They usually came from the abundant Rosa rugosa and Rosa centifolia.

The rose preserve had a nice creamy texture and would smell and taste just like the roses on a bush. The whole summer vacation was captured in small jars. Kind of...


Ingredients:
  • 1 cup organic rose petals
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cup raw sugar
  • juice of one lemon


Method:
  • Clean the rose petals from all impurities. Cut off the white ends as they are rather bitter. 
  • Gently wash and dry the rose petals.
  • Place rose petals in a mixing bowl and add small amount of sugar. Using a wooden pestle stir the sugar mixing it into the rose petals. Add a little lemon juice. Stir again.
  • Repeat this action until you have used up all the sugar. You should have produced a creamy mass.
  • Place the rose preserve into small, clean jars and store in a cold, dark place. Refrigerate  after opening, but do not freeze. 
Enjoy in good company on a fresh toast or croissant, on crêpes or in doughnuts.  Add a spoonful to a cup of yoghurt or your morning smoothie. Use generously during the autumn and winter months to invoke memories of a sun soaked rose garden.

Meanwhile, enjoy the summer and take time to smell the roses! 

By Dominique Allmon

P.S. 

The above recipe yields a raw rose petal preserve. Another version of this delicacy calls for a 1/2 cup of water. The water is added to the rose petal-sugar mass and slowly warmed over a small heat. Stirring is necessary or the jam may burn at the bottom of a pot. After the mass reaches the boiling point it should be ready for canning.

More about the beauty of roses here