There is an old fashioned climbing rose blooming in the garden this month, its exquisite deep fuchsia pink clustered petals and wafting scent make it a perfect rose to use in cooking. The best roses to use for cooking are the highly scented old- fashioned varieties in the deep pink to dark red colour range.
Rain drops on roses… Its actually best to collect rose petals early in the morning on a dry day, when the petals are still full of their essential oils and just before they naturally drop and float to the ground like confetti.
Having not planted any of the roses in our new garden, we’re not a 100% certain of all their names, but I think these beautiful smelling petals could belong to a climbing rose named ‘Parade’.
Granny Smith apples work well in this jam- adding extra fruitiness and texture.
This is probably personal preference but a really quick way to cut up your rhubarb stalks is by using a sharp pair of kitchen scissors- cutting the rhubarb stalks as you go straight into the pan…
- 100g highly scented rose petals, torn up if large
- 2 eating apples ( I used Granny Smiths), peeled, cored and chopped
- 700g young tender rhubarb stalks, cut into 1cm lengths
- 400g granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice and finely grated zest of half a lemon
- 2 tsp rose water
- Put the chopped rhubarb and apple into a preserving pan with 150ml of water or fresh apple juice and simmer, stirring every so often for 5-7 minutes until the rhubarb has softened.
- Stir in the rose petals, sugar, lemon juice and zest.
- Bring to the boil, then boil, stirring occasionally for 8-10 minutes until thickened. The rhubarb and apple will naturally make this jam nice and pulpy, so don't worry about doing a test for setting point.
- Take the jam off the heat and stir in the the rose water, allow to cool slightly then ladle or funnel using a jam funnel into sterilised jars.
- Seal and label.
- This jam is best stored in the fridge.
This rose water is very concentrated, it amplifies the excellent scent and flavour of this jam.
I love to use rose water in cooking, adding a little to ice creams, sorbets, cordials, cakes, pannacotta’s, icing and fruit compotes. The flavours of rhubarb and roses blend particularly well together.
Whilst the juicy dark red, striped with green rhubarb stalks are still shooting up and an abundance of beautiful roses are enchanting the garden with colour and scent; now is the perfect time to bubble up this delicious fruity and floral jam.
Sometimes you just need cake! Recipe to follow soon for this orange and lemon Bundt cake sandwiched with this heavenly jam and trickled with orange icing …. so do come back…
Happy Jam making!