It has been mentioned before that our mountain cabin was once owned by the character actress Dodo Denny. By all accounts she was a lover of roses. Her rose garden is the talk of the neighborhood. The same people, whom collectively, may have been
a bit disappointed in our attention to it. I personally believe Dodo is a bit put off too. Let me explain. We purchased the home after Dodo passed. 4 years after. The grounds had been neglected, and the prized roses left to die. I am not fond of taunting the dead, so I pruned the bushes back to almost nothing. I retrained the trellis roses, pulled those that were not going to make it, and then I let them be while we worked on the rest of the garden. Finally, two summers later, Dodo’s rose garden is making a comeback. We are enjoying the scent and beauty of the flowers, but I couldn’t resist cutting a few to make sugared rose petals. Please don’t snitch Dodo is just starting to like us.
Sugared Rose Petals
freshly picked, pesticide free roses*
granulated sugar (about 1 cup per rose)
Wash the roses while whole gently, and allow to dry. I swish them in a bowl of cool clean water. Once the roses have air dried, carefully remove the petals. Discard any that are discolored or are browning (or set aside to dry and use as potpourri). Spread the petals out on paper towels while you work on the other flowers. Place about a 1/4 cup of vodka in a bowl. Pour sugar in a shallow dish about 1/2 inch thick. You will need more sugar, as it will get damp and become difficult to work with. do not pour in all your sugar at once. Prepare a sheet pan with wax or parchment paper on it to be used for your sugared petals. Dip each petal in the vodka, then lay it on the sugar. You can do 4 or 5 at a time, but work quickly, as the vodka evaporates. Once you have 4 or 5 petals resting on the sugar, spoon more sugar on top. Gently press the petals and turn once to coat evenly. Remove from the sugar and place on parchment lined sheet pan. Resist the urge to move/touch them. allow to dry about 12 hours, but can take up to 48. store in an airtight container, lined with paper towel in a single layer until ready to use.
note: i used vodka rather than egg white, for ease. you can use powdered egg whites with a bit of water and have a great result. if you choose to do it this way, use a paint brush to get the whites on the flower.
*it is very important that you know firsthand that your roses are free of pesticides