The Vintage Rose: A Valentine’s Cocktail
Valentine’s Day is coming up, and with Rosalind Creasy’s The Edible Flower Garden still on my mind, how could I resist sharing a romantic rose-cocktail made with real rose petals and homemade rose syrup? Long time readers may recall this recipe from nearly a decade ago, when The Gardener’s Eden was just getting started. Time to revive a long-standing favorite in the name of love and flowers!
Although it’s easier to locate fresh, organic rose petals in June, many florists now offer organically grown flowers year round. Request imperfect roses —or bags of fresh, organic rose petals— since you will be dismantling them. Be sure to ask for organic roses, making certain that no pesticides have been sprayed on your blossoms. Remember, you will be making syrup and sipping wine soaked in these petals! I make my own rose syrup for this recipe (best made 24 hours ahead, to steep). Some recipes simply use water, sugar and rose petals, however, I like to add food grade rose water and sprigs of French lavender, plus a few drops of organic red food coloring for a pretty pink hue.
Vintage Rose Cocktail
Adapted from The Bubbly Girl, Maria Hunt
Ingredients (makes one cocktail):
Â¾Â ozÂ Â Â Rose syrup (see recipe below)
5 ozÂ Â Â Chilled, brut prosecco, cava or champagne
TwistÂ Â Â Meyer lemon
6Â Â Â Â Â Â Organic rose petals
Add the rose syrup* to a chilled champagne flute. Top with sparkling wine or champagne. Twist the lemon peel over the glass to release the oils and then drop it into the flute. Garnish with fresh, organic rose petals.
*You can buy rose syrup at many specialty stores, however we made our own:
2Â Â Â Cups Organic Rose Petals (Rugosa, English and Heirloom Roses are best!)
1/2Â Â Cup Water
1/2Â Â Cup Rose Flower Water (or sub water if unavailable)
3Â Â Â Â Sprigs French Lavender
2/3Â Â Cup Granulated Sugar (use up to 1 cup of sugar for thicker syrup)
2Â Â Â Â Drops Organic Red Food Coloring (optional)
Mix water and rose flower water (if using) in a medium saucepan and bring the mixture to a slow boil. Immediately add the sugar, stirring constantly. Once the sugar has melted, reduce the heat to a simmer. Slowly stir in the rose petals and lavender. Stir for a few minutes to thicken. Remove saucepan from heat and allow to cool. You may add a couple of drops of organic red food coloring at this point, if you so desire.
Pour the syrup mixture into a bowl with a tight fitting lid and allow to steep and cool overnight in the refrigerator. Remove lavender sprigs and seal the rose syrup in a small bottle. The syrup will keep fresh in the refrigerator for approximately 2 weeks. Freeze rose syrup for longer storage. Rose syrup can be used in many recipes —including cocktails, desserts and even main course entrees— so it’s very worth keeping some on hand, with your emergency stash of ice cream!
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