Roses. A rose is a rose is a rose and yet…so much more than just a rose. There is something over-wordly about this Queen of Flowers. They awaken our lust, passion, greed for more. Our senses become alert to touch, scent, flavor… They just make us want more. If we have one rose in the garden we want more, if we love somebody, we don’t just give them ONE rose – a whole bunch says more. if we smell one rose we are eager to move forward to the next, abandoning all else. We love the scent, shape and colors. I was reminded of this when I was in Gothenburg, invited as a guest speaker at Trädgårdsföreningen, http://www.tradgardsforeningen.se/wps/portal/tradgardsf/rosariet They have one of the greatest Rose collections in Europe. Waching the crowds (7 000 people in one day!) sniffing, enjoying, buying and devouring roses.
My job here was to speak about how we can use roses in our every day lives for food, health and beauty. Here are the recipes I shared.
The most common question I get is whether you can use all roses. Yes, you can, with the exception of stem roses that are so heavily sprayed that they’d be considered toxic! Also don’t pick roses in parks where they may be sprayed. My favorites are the wild roses.
So, recipes, here we go.
Roses for the skin. This Queen of Flowers has many healing properties, such as: cooling, astringent, rehydrating, antibacterial, antiinflammatory, rejuvenating and softening. Suitable for most skin types.
Facial water You can buy Rosewater and use as it is as a facial water that is cleansing and cooling. Or make your own, it’s very simple. You put a handful of Rose petals in a pot with water. Bring to boil, turn off the heat, put on a lid and leave until the water has cooled. Remove flowers and use to moisten the face. Or make a large batch and pour it in the bathtub for a fragrant bath.
A cooling, astringent and rejuvenating facial mask that feels great after a day in the sun.
1 dl brown rice flour or white clay (or both, mixed)
1 handful fresh or dried Rose petals
Rosewater – buy or make your own, see recipe above
Mix the egg white, flour and the roses in a blender. Add more liquid if to desired texture. The paste should be easy to apply on the skin. Apply on face and neck. Leave for 20 minuter. Rinse off.
Rosy Body Scrub
A pink salt scrub that will make the skin on your body as soft as a Rose petal. Not recommended for the face.
5 deciliters fine seasalt
2,5 deciliter organic, coldpressed vegetable oil. I like almond or sunflower.
2 handfuls of fresh Rose petals
1 teaspoon lemon zest
For extra luxury: add 3-4 strawberries
Mix all ingredients. Put the scrub in a dry, clean glass jar. The scrub is great to soften skin, remove dead skincells, increas cirkulation and to soften hands and feet.
Use: take a shower or a bath, massage the scrub into your body. Rinse off. No need to use body lotion after since the skin will have absorbed the lovely oils.The scrub will hold at least 6 months in room temperature.
Facial Rose Oil
1 deciliter almond-, or jojobaoil
5 drops essential rose oil (organic)
Pour the oil in a bottle, add the essential oil.
Use: shake the bottle and pour a few drops on your fingers. Massage inte face and neck.
Roses are in the West most commonly used for sweets, but let yourself be inspired by the Middle Eastern kitchen and enjoy them in savory dishes and beverages too! Just sprinkle a few petals over a salad, on a sandwich or mix them in a smoothie. The flavor is sweet, acrid and a bit bitter. To reduce the bitterness, remove the white area at the bottom of the petal.
Add Rose petals to the dough when baking, use them dried in porridge or muesli. Boil rice or potatoes in Rosewater, make a Rose Ice Cream…the Roses know no boundaries…
Other flavors that go with Rose to get you going: Cardamon, lemon, basil, almond, chicken, fish, chocolate, coffee, cucumber, orange, saffron, pistachio and hazelnuts.
Varsågoda, här kommer recepten:
Mix fine seasalt with a handful of fresh Rose petals. Put the salt in a dry, clean glass jar. Store the salt in a dark, cool space and it will maintain flavor and color at least a year. Great with fish, chicken, eggs and any green vegetables.
Rose salt with water melon and rosewater is nothing less than outstanding. I invented this dish on stage, where I happened to have water melon within reach: slice a water melon, add Rosewater over it and sprinkle som Rose salt. If you’re hungry, add feta cheese, strawberries, cherry tomatoes and basil.
1 handful fresh Rosepetals
1,5 dl Rosewater
2 deciliters Turkish yoghurt
a pinch of cardamon OR saffron
a few ice cubes
Mix, drink, enjoy.
Some kind of Rose pesto
2 deciliters roasted almonds (also members of the Rose family))
1 handful of fresh Rose petals
1 deciliters grated coconut
A mild vegetable oil – like almond, sesame or sunflower oil
Chop the almond and Rose petals. Mix in a bowl with oil and coconut. Add salt to taste. Mix all ingredients. Serve with fish, curries, veggies or…anywhere you find fitting.
Crazy Rose Candy
This recipe was invented for the occaion in Gothenburg – maken any variety you like.
1 jar almond paste
1- 2 deciliters honey
2-3 deciliter cocoa powder
4 deciliters grated coconut
a handful dried strawberries
a handful dried raspberries
2 deciliters buckwheat flakes
1 tablespoon ground coffee beans
½ deciliter Rosewater
Mix all ingredient (save half the coconut and rosepetals for later in a bowl to make a paste that is easy to shape. If it is too loose, just add more cocoa(never be shy about chocolate!) and buckwheat flakes.
On a tray, spread out the rest of the grated coconuts and chopped Rosepetals. Shape the paste into balls. Eat. Should there, for some reason, be some left, they will hold for at least a week. How long exactly I don’t know…I consume them too fast.
And finally – Roses for health: I am convinced, that indulgence, delight is the greatest medicine. And I mean the simple things, enjoying small things in everyday life. Finding beauty in every day life, using a nice scent to smell good, enjoying the hell out of your morning coffee. Roses are great for this – make a body oil with rose to brighten up the morning, drink a cup of Rose infusion to calm down the senses and become more present and appreciative, or just put a bunch of Rose petals in the bathtub and see how that affects your mood.
On top of this, the Rose is considered to be an antidepressant, aphrodisiac, harmonizing, strengthening for the nervous system, calming, good for the intestinal flora, a mild laxative, diuretic, nourishing, antibacterial and antiinflammatory. So there is every reason to enjoy a Rose infusion, bath or scent every single day.
All you need for this is a few Rose petals, hot water and a tea pot.
Put the petals in a teapot, add the hot water and wait a few minutes. Drink to your health.
Rose hips, the fruit of Rose, are wonderful, I will write more about them when they are in season.
Stay good, Lisen