Roses: The Edible Gift

Roses are red, violets are blue…you can have your bouquet, and eat it too! This Valentine’s Day surprise your loved one with an aromatic treat prepared with roses, because nothing is more romantic than a dinner cooked from the heart, or perhaps.. from their repurposed gift!

Here at Rolling Greens we have been recently very inspired by the ways in which we could use greens, flowers and spices in cooking, baking and mixology! We believe that our gorgeous blooms don’t just help make your garden a home - they make your kitchen a home too! And so, today we are featuring one of our current favorite cookbooks, Dandelion & Quince, to share all the ways in which you can use roses for your culinary needs!

ABOUT DANDELION & QUINCE

As described so eloquently by author Michelle McKenzie, this book pays homage to the things not so commonly found in your fridge or spice rack:

"Strolling through your local farmers' market or grocery store, you're familiar with the standard produce--the autumn kale and heirloom apples, the eagerly awaited peaches and tomatoes of high summer--and you know how to make the most of them. But what about the nettles, kumquats, green garlic, and quince? For those of you with a curious palate there is a world of beautifully simple yet overlooked ingredients to be discovered and enjoyed. Think Farro with Persimmons, Arugula, and Pancetta-Fried Hazelnuts; Chicken Thighs Braised with Fig Leaves. Dandelion & Quince is a lavishly illustrated cookbook and field guide for bringing the diversity of edible plant life into your kitchen and onto your plate."

This brings us to... our wonderful rose recipes!

THE ROSES YOU NEED

- Seasons: Spring and summer are the seasons to seek fresh roses.

- Year-Round Buys: Dried petals can be purchased year-round from specialty markets, tea shops, and online.

- Types: Choose unsprayed and fragrant blooms.

- Care: Keep the flowers in a vase of water, and pull the petals as needed.

HOW TO USE THEM

- Teas: Add fresh or dried petals to herbal tea or combine them with black tea leaves.

- Dip: Make a classic Middle Eastern dip - Combine plain sheep's milk yogurt with minced garlic, a pinch of dried mint, finely chopped Persian cucumber, soaked currants, and salt; garnish with olive oil, more currants, dried mint, and dried rose petals.

- Spice: Make Almond Picada, but add soaked, dried rose petals and chile; serve with grilled lamb and/or vegetables.

- Dough: Finely crush the petals and add to pastry or shortbread dough; the addition is especially welcome in maamoul, a Middle Eastern cookie stuffed with pureed dates.

- Sweets: Steep petals in warm heavy cream, then strain. The rose cream can be used for ganache, truffles, anna cotta, and creme brûlée. 

- Syrup: Steep petals in simple syrup, then strain. The rose syrup can be used to make sorbets (especially good with strawberry, rhubarb, or raspberry), lemonade, and poached fruit.

FEATURED RECIPE: BLACKBERRY, RYE + ROSE CAKE

Ingredients (Makes 8 Servings)

- 7 ounces unsalted butter at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pan
- 2 tablespoons dried rose petals
- About one cup (8 ounces) granulated sugar
- About 1 1/2 cups (10 ounces) blackberries
-  6 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) almond flour
- 3/4 cup (4 ounces) rye flour
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 batch Whipped Creme Fraiche

Steps

1) Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper; butter it liberally. For cakes that have thick batters, the easiest way to line a springform pan is take a square of parchment and lay it across the base of the separated pan. Simply clasp the springform round on top (there will be an overhang, and that's fine). This method ensures that you can spread the batter evenly across the base of the pan without a circle of parchment moving around.

2) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Crush the rose petals with 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar using a mortar and pestle. Toss the blackberries with 2 tablespoons of the rose sugar in a small bowl, then crush into a coarse puree using the tines of a fork (pieces of fruit should still be discernible).

3) Combine the butter and remaining sugar in a food processor, and pulse until combined. Whisk together the eggs and add them to the processor; pulse to combine.

4) Whisk together the almond flour, rye flour, sea salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the food processor, and pulse until the batter is thoroughly mixed, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.

5) Spread one third of the batter into the prepared pan, then gently spoon the crushed blackberries on top. Carefully spread the remaining batter over the blackberries. Scatter the rest of the rose sugar on top (you may not use it all). Bake until the cake has set and turned a deep golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely before unfolding and slicing. Serve with whipped creme fraiche. Store the leftover cake covered at room temperature for up to three days.

That's all it takes! Rye flour is dark, earthy, and a little funky, but the blackberries and rose petals really life and balance those qualities. The result is a cake that is as unique as it is harmonious!

If you enjoyed this recipe, Dandelion & Quince has a plethora of unique and fun-to-make culinary experiments that you're bound to dig into - sweet, savory, and everything in between! Our vast cookbook collection in our pantry department continues to blossom, along with all else in our store! Stop by our Los Angeles location today to take your pick from our selection!

We hope your Valentine's Day is nice and rosy!

Rolling Greens