Earlier this fall I made my way to Blue Moon Acres' Edible Flower Garden and got lost in the scents and tastes of the petite blossoms. Hours later, I was baking a rose bundt cake with vanilla creme fraiche icing (infused with a pink hue) and a candied rose petal halo that was featured on DesignSponge. Even after the cake was devoured I was left with a small jar of freshly candied petals. Rather than dust myself with sugar and flour again I stirred the sweet blossoms into a cup of Keemun tea.
Keemun is a Chinese black tea from the Anhui province that is known for its gentle toasty flavor with hints of dark cocoa, deep but subtle sweet notes, and slight fruitiness. The hint of rose lingered in the black tea and played upon fruit notes while it danced with dark cocoa with a sweeter finish from the sugar. And since it is the season of gathering and thanking a host or hostess with a token of gratitude, you might consider seeking fresh petals (which may be difficult to find this time of year but worth a try) to candy and gift in a gorgeous glass jar along with a tin of tea. Do note that rose plays well with a range of teas from jasmine green (for a pronounced floral bouquet, a masala chai, an assam black tea and an herbal chamomile/lavender blend.
Candied Rose Petals
• Egg white from 1 egg
• Superfine sugar
• Rose petals (clean, dry, grown in garden without pesticides)
Separate the yolk from the egg white, and place the egg white in a small, shallow bowl. Add superfine sugar to a second shallow bowl. Cover one baking sheet with parchment paper. Individually dip each rose petal into the egg white and then dip into the sugar, shaking it free of excess sugar. Place petals on the parchment paper and allow them to dry for 7-12 hours in a cool, dry location until hardened. Store the petals in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one year.