Can we just talk about how lovely roses are for a minute?
When the wild roses start to bloom in June, I get very excited. Roses are one of my favourite flowers to eat and enjoy in a variety of ways. All season long my daughter and I will harvest rose petals and I smile whenever I find them months later, dried but equally fragrant in the pockets of spring jackets. All roses are edible and easy to recognize, however they vary greatly in flavour according to species from sweet to bitter, from mild to spicy. While store-bought roses might tempt you with their beauty, never eat them as they are likely to be sprayed with chemicals and fragrance, be cautious of heavily fertilized flowers as well, as they can absorb fungicides which can make them unsafe for consumption. Luckily, garden variety roses and wild roses are plentiful. Try a few varieties and notice the difference of fragrance and flavour.
Roses can be used in so many ways and have countless nutritional, cosmetic and medicinal benefits. In Ayurvedic medicine we use opposites to balance. Roses are considered cooling which make them perfect for use during hot summer months, and can help to pacify heat in the body. Excess heat is understood to cause symptoms such as irritability, headaches, inflammation and redness in the skin. I carry around a bottle of homemade rose water to spray on my face which helps to cool me down and uplift my spirits all summer long, a spritz of rosewater always puts a smile on my face.
Nadia has a gift for making beautiful things and this applies to food as well. Today we wanted something cold and cooling, so we decided to make rose petal popsicles!
First, we made a rose honey - you can follow our recipe for lilac honey and substitute the lilacs with rose petals. Then we put a few tablespoons of organic plain full fat Greek yogurt in a blender, sweetened it with our rose honey, added a few fresh rose petals and blended it all up. We poured the mixture into our popsicle moulds and a few hours later, had the most refreshing treat! The popsicles have a subtle but distinct rose flavour - these particular rose petals tasted a little bit like raspberries.
plain organic full fat Greek yogurt
fresh fragrant rose petals
place a few tablespoons of yogurt in a blender
add fresh rose petals
sweeten with rose honey to taste (always make your popsicle mixture a little sweeter than you would like it to be, as it will taste less sweet once frozen)
blend until smooth, add whole rose petals if desired
pour into popsicle moulds and place in freezer until frozen