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nyfirepatrolchef

Rose petals

62 posts in this topic

Basic questions are my forte, Cabrales.

Most rosewater that is sold in a food shop or the food section of a shop, should be edible.

If the bottles have an ingredients list check that the main ingredient or 'base' is not alcohol, for this would be perfume.

In Australia I buy a Lebanese brand called AL-RABIH. They make all sorts of flower waters, pomegranite syrup and a lovely fig jam with whole fennel seeds in it.


How sad; a house full of condiments and no food.

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Suvir--the rose petal jam recipe I've come across that seems like it would work best is Claudia Roden's in "The New Book of Middle Eastern Food." One pound (red) petals, juice of 1.5 lemons, 2 C sugar, 2-3 T rose water. Simmer the petals in water with juice of 1/2 lemon for 30 minutes. Drain then make a syrup by boiling 2.5 C water with the sugar and the remaining juice for 10 minutes. After cooling, she adds the petals and allows to macerate for 24 hours. Then she returns the syrup and petals to a boil and simmers for 20 minutes, adds the rose water and then pours into a glass jar until cool.

I haven't tried it--but the author notes "I have not been able to make a good one with the roses from my garden. The petals remained tough under the tooth." So clearly the rose species plays a part--and perhaps adding a little science and French sophistication with pectin and different liquid sugars might help.


Steve Klc

Pastry chef-Restaurant Consultant

Oyamel : Zaytinya : Cafe Atlantico : Jaleo

chef@pastryarts.com

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So clearly the rose species plays a part--and perhaps adding a little science and French sophistication with pectin and different liquid sugars might help.

What might you think those from the east that have had these preserves for just as long.. at least a thousand plus years... what French sophistry had they mastered? Maybe the science they knew, we still do not... Just wonder. For the preserves you get in Indian stores, Sahadi and several Middle Eastern markets around the world never have that problem.

But I have never tried making rose preserve in the US. IN India I made it as a teenager. The sun was the secret scientific ingredient in the recipe. And many days of full dry heat did the magical trick. And it also kept the rose preserve very simple, natural and very close to the actual flavor of the petals. ths sugar seemed like it trapped the flavors.

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And I can certainly imagine French chefs doing some marvelous things with these preserves. The dessert Cabralles described sounded amazing.

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There were a couple of questions about my Rose Opera Cake.

I was so psyched up about the rose idea that I wanted to use it for something, and I wanted to use it in a completely different way than I was seeing it used. I also had an idea that rose would be great with dark chocolate. The project I had at the time was to create French-style pastries using Indian flavors and spices.

My Rose opera is a traditional French-style opera cake except that I make a pistachio jaconde, use rose buttercream, and infuse the dark chocolate ganache with cardamom. I like the colors (green, pink, dark brown). When sufficiently motivated I serve it with a tiny decorative rosebud (made of chocolate) on top. I think it would be a tasty and beautiful plated dessert served with a plain creme anglaise, a rose syrup, a small dome of pistachio cream with an Adria-style thin caramel tuile with bits of candied rose petals suspended in it.

Rose%20opera.jpg

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There were a couple of questions about my Rose Opera Cake. 

I was so psyched up about the rose idea that I wanted to use it for something, and I wanted to use it in a completely different way than I was seeing it used.  I also had an idea that rose would be great with dark chocolate.  The project I had at the time was to create French-style pastries using Indian flavors and spices.

My Rose opera is a traditional style opera cake except that I make a pistachio jaconde, use rose buttercream, and infuse the dark chocolate ganache with cardamom.  I like the colors (green, pink, dark brown).  When sufficiently motivated I serve it with a tiny decorative rosebud (made of chocolate) on top.  I think it would be a tasty and beautiful plated dessert served with a plain creme anglaise, a rose syrup, a small dome of pistachio cream with an Adria-style thin caramel tuile with bits of candied rose petals suspended in it. 

Rose%20opera.jpg

Chefette,

Thanks for sharing the recipe and the pics. It seems lovely and I am sure tastes very good too.

What restaurant menu did you do this for?

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This was one of the items I developed working with Steve on plans for Restaurant Ada. Due to circumstances, this dessert was never introduced there. I may demo it or serve it this year at the Salon Culinaire in NYC in November. (The International Hotel, Motel & Restaurant Show.)

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Rose%20opera.jpg

Cheffette....that is wondeful.. I am in awe. :wub: I'm planning on making a birthday cake for my mother and think I have found my inspiration.

It is utterly lovely.

maggie


There's a yummy in my tummy.

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Seriously impressive, chefette. Now if we could just work out a way for you to do international mail order... :wink:

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Rose%20opera.jpg

It is utterly lovely.

maggie

It is lovely. ANd what a great picture too. How well composes. And the roses are so beautiful. The shadows between the rose petals just go so beautifully with the layers of the cake. A grand idea.

Ada would have been too lucky to have had it on their menu and not prepared enough to serve it with circumspect aura. I am sure when you find a home worthy of its inclusion, this cake will charm many.

Even through the screen it moves me. How kind of you to have taken the time to share a picture. Thanks!

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Chefette,

I bake a lot. Maybe a few times every week. But I have never made an Opera cake. Actually for that matter, I have never made any layer cake. :shock:

Are such cakes very difficult to prepare? Tedious? Both?

Would it be possible for home chefs to make these without feeling overwhelmed?

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The cake for this is a jaconde - a very thin cake. It isn't hard, but it isn't easy either since you foam the whites and yolks seperately and need to get it in the oven very quickly. At home it is hard to get the oven hot enough, and there is not enough space to bake off a batch all at once. You also need to be attentive so that you do not overbake the cake so it is too dry. There are certainly other approaches and adaptations that might make the cake portion easier at home. Otherwise the only tricky part is to get everything layered really evenly so you don't end up with thin spots and huge munga blobs of cream.

It is very rich so a small piece is satisfying.

I was hesitant at first to serve this cake to many people since I was concerned they would find it too strange. In its very first airing - an AIWF event, I had it out in all its full glory (WITH the mini roses that I spent HOURS making for the 200 pieces) and it seemed no one was eating any. Generated interest and all, but not many takers. THEN, at the end of the event almost everyone swept by with a plate or cup or some container to 'take a couple home for the kids'. I felt very flattered in the end. Generally, I think people are attracted to it because of its interesting colors and so far it has had nothing but rave reviews.

I just served it together with a traditional opera at a party over the weekend as a petit four and it left the poor time honored hazelnut and coffee version in the dust.

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And Suvir--I'm reading a few Greek and Middle eastern cookbooks right now and a few of them mention that red rose petals are the most fragrant.  Have you only seen pink used in India?

As far as I know the pink ones with smallish petals are the most fragrant. My grandmother has several bushes of these roses surrounding her garden in my native Lebanon. I have never seen these roses in the US (probably because they do not look as pretty as the long stem/big petals ones that we see at the flower stores). She uses the roses every year to make home made "rose water". Oh boy I cannot describe how good the whole house smells when she makes it. hmmmm.... memory lane

she never made rose petal jam though

FM


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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do you recall her technique FM?


Steve Klc

Pastry chef-Restaurant Consultant

Oyamel : Zaytinya : Cafe Atlantico : Jaleo

chef@pastryarts.com

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Sahadi Importers has the preserve too.

Do you know what the preserve tastes like? Where is it from?

Thanks for sharing this. :biggrin:

Tis Romanian!

Its just I love Sahadis from the day I walked in there for the first time...and the owner is such a decent standup kinda guy I have a personal pleadge to plug his shop all I can.

Havent tasted it....its got sugar...nono for me

*sigh*

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Quote : Suvir "They simply take several tons of rose petals and dry them in unending yardage of white muslin that is draped over the grass in the palace in Jaipur."

Sigh.  It sounds soooo exotic and soooo beutiful. 

I have always been attracted to the rose thing - Like Water for Chocolate, Candied Rose Petals, Rose ice cream...  I recently purchased a bottle of Rose Petal Jam at a Market in Massachusets.  I am far away from my fridge right now so don't know brand but have a sense that it might have been imported from England.  At the price I paid it should have been imported straight from The 'Palace in Jaipu'  (flutey music and wafting white curtains when you read that phrase please).  Anyway, its really pretty, tastes yummy, and - best of all - has rose petals suspended in it.

Interesting point earlier about the different colored rose petals.  Thinking about my own experience the petals used have invariably been pink ones.  Never thought about it before.  Hmmmmm.  The possibilities...

I developed a Rose Opera Cake as a special dessert for an Indian Restaurant I was working with.  My original idea was to serve it as a petit four on a candied rose petal. 

I did serve the cake - sans petal at the NY Chocolate Show last fall during my demo on sculpting and it was very enthusiastically received. :smile:

figures...the one year I dont make the damned show....Id love to have seen it....as you can imagine my brain was just a little scrambled at that point in time....I just plain forgot about the show.

When I could drink it I used rose water in midestern coffee....and used rose syrup over a good vanilla ice cream.

Got one of my more adventurous coworkers to try it too.

she got past the funky scent and really enjoyed it...("hey mikey...pass the bottle down will ya?")

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Greeks and Eastern Mediterranean--I think mostly to make jams and rosewater--which would then be used in syrups, pastries with phyllo, served with rice puddings, ice cream, little fruit mixtures.  For beverages, I've come across recipes for cold almond milk drinks flavored with rose and even plain spring water perfumed with rose petals.  In desserts, rose seems most often combined with other flavors like mastic, orange blossom water, pistachios, lemon but really, you can find recipes and references to rosewater being combined with many, many things--all dried fruits, pomegranate seeds, etc. The one or two Turkish books I have have some interesting traditional dishes--a milk pudding with rosewater and a rice pudding with saffron and rosewater.

Suvir--have you ever seen preserves with the whole petal intact--as in the Canadian example I have?  I love the Diana Vreeland pink as the navy blue of India line.

Steve~

recipes for the almond/milk drink please???

if it wouldnt be too awful with soy milk substituted....Id love something new and fun.

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Rose%20opera.jpg

It is utterly lovely.

maggie

It is lovely. ANd what a great picture too. How well composes. And the roses are so beautiful. The shadows between the rose petals just go so beautifully with the layers of the cake. A grand idea.

Ada would have been too lucky to have had it on their menu and not prepared enough to serve it with circumspect aura. I am sure when you find a home worthy of its inclusion, this cake will charm many.

Even through the screen it moves me. How kind of you to have taken the time to share a picture. Thanks!

oooooh YEAH just ROSY baby!~

*cues Austin Powers theme*

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do you recall her technique FM?

I do recall the basic technique. I wish I paid more attention, but at the time I just took it for granted I guess. Basically the first step is to dry the roses in the sun. Then to extract the rose water she uses a small distilling setup made with two special cast iron "pots" (open ends facing each other and sealed with some sort of clay) on top of each other. the top one has a cooled pipe through which the rose water runs to a small pot at its end.

huh... I guess I remember more than I thought.

Hope this helps

Are you going to try it Steve? If you do don't forget to send me a bottle, right now I have to use store bought rose water.

FM


E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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FM--I'll try anything once but I'd need more to go on then that;

NYFP--you can buy almond milk just like soy milk in supermarkets now but I prefer home made--just simmer ground almonds or almond flour in water, infuse for awhile, say overnight, and then strain. There are some more complicated versions but that's basically it. Depending on which you use--ground nuts or flour--you get a slightly different end result: since nut "flour" has had most of the nut oil extracted or pressed out of it. Not better or worse, just different. I like the flour since the flour is ground finer than you can grind your self. Don't add rose water until cool. Add sugar and lemon juice to taste. Sprinkle ground pistachios--especially bright green Sicilian pistachios on top if you really want to get daring.

I'm not clear from your soy milk comment but if you can't drink almond milk (which doesn't actually contain any milk--it's all nut) then it's probably not worth making the drink as is. With soy substituted you might want to explore a few different flavor profiles rather than rose--but I haven't worked with soy, so go for it. I find almond milk delicious and first worked with it in Medieval recipes--where many dishes had to be adjusted for religious dietary restrictions. Good almond milk rocks--and I'm planning on doing an almond milk panna cotta for an upcoming restaurant project because it just seems to go with so many other flavors of this region.

The main idea is to avoid the trap Suvir mentioned earlier of drinks which overdo the sweetness and rose flavor and/or use an inferior quality rose water or essence.

Start by thinking of rose as an elusive perfume which you have to be half way through eating or drinking a dish before you realize yes, this is rose! When you are more comfortable with it, push more.


Steve Klc

Pastry chef-Restaurant Consultant

Oyamel : Zaytinya : Cafe Atlantico : Jaleo

chef@pastryarts.com

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As far as I know the pink ones with smallish petals are the most fragrant. My grandmother has several bushes of these roses surrounding her garden in my native Lebanon. I have never seen these roses in the US (probably because they do not look as pretty as the long stem/big petals ones that we see at the flower stores).

It is the same kind of rose we use in India. Highly fragrant, not the most attractive, but most haunting in its smell.

And yes it was never the prized rose of the British rose gardens around India.

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Sahadi Importers has the preserve too.

Do you know what the preserve tastes like? Where is it from?

Thanks for sharing this. :biggrin:

Tis Romanian!

Its just I love Sahadis from the day I walked in there for the first time...and the owner is such a decent standup kinda guy I have a personal pleadge to plug his shop all I can.

Havent tasted it....its got sugar...nono for me

*sigh*

I love Sahadis as well. Wish I was not as lazy about going to Atlantic avenue. There are two great stores opposite one another. Sahadis and Oriental Baker.

Oriental Bakery has the best Basboussa and other Middle Eastern sweet. It is my own little bit of paradise in NYC.

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The main idea is to avoid the trap Suvir mentioned earlier of drinks which overdo the sweetness and rose flavor and/or use an inferior quality rose water or essence.

Steven, we need more like you to get people familiarized with these different ingredients. Too many people think nothing of overwhelming others too the very bold flavors of these perfumes.

But when worked in the way you explain, it would be almos a fool hardy way of making people convert. In fact one could easily see people wanting to know more about such exotic ingredients.

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I just served it together with a traditional opera at a party over the weekend as a petit four and it left the poor time honored hazelnut and coffee version in the dust.

It would get my attention anywhere. It could be my opera. I would be happy humming tunes as I ate it, several servings over the period of time that the Opera would have needed my attention. I love sweets that much.. and that photograph you share, and every detail you provide makes it seem just so enticing.

I can easily imagine this cake of yours being my favorite in any assortment. It seems to me like it would taste amazing, your own reputations are those that would make me easy believers and also it photographs so beautifully. Thanks for sharing. :smile:

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FM--I'll try anything once but I'd need more to go on then that;

NYFP--you can buy almond milk just like soy milk in supermarkets now but I prefer home made--just simmer ground almonds or almond flour in water, infuse for awhile, say overnight, and then strain.  There are some more complicated versions but that's basically it.  Depending on which you use--ground nuts or flour--you get a slightly different end result:  since nut "flour" has had most of the nut oil extracted or pressed out of it.  Not better or worse, just different.  I like the flour since the flour is ground finer than you can grind your self.  Don't add rose water until cool.  Add sugar and lemon juice to taste.  Sprinkle ground pistachios--especially bright green Sicilian pistachios on top if you really want to get daring.

I'm not clear from your soy milk comment but if you can't drink almond milk (which doesn't actually contain any milk--it's all nut) then it's probably not worth making the drink as is.  With soy substituted you might want to explore a few different flavor profiles rather than rose--but I haven't worked with soy, so go for it.  I find almond milk delicious and first worked with it in Medieval recipes--where many dishes had to be adjusted for religious dietary restrictions.  Good almond milk rocks--and I'm planning on doing an almond milk panna cotta for an upcoming restaurant project because it just seems to go with so many other flavors of this region.

The main idea is to avoid the trap Suvir mentioned earlier of drinks which overdo the sweetness and rose flavor and/or use an inferior quality rose water or essence.

Start by thinking of rose as an elusive perfume which you have to be half way through eating or drinking a dish before you realize yes, this is rose! When you are more comfortable with it, push more.

Steve~

Thought the ALmond Milk concepet pertained to regular milk infused or flavored in some way using Almonds in one form or another. But now you point out is just an almond version of soy milk concept..WOOHOO!!!! I can do that concoction with sweetner (honey or brown rice syrup) and so on.

Amounts for the do it yourself version of almond milk please?

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