Sunday, 1 November 2009

Summer roses

After a burst of envy for autumn pleasures of halloween parties and bonfires, I went out into the garden this morning and was overwhelmed by the scent and colour of the roses. They have loved the alternate days of rain and warmth this last week.

The fat buds of this rose darken to a black-red and the flowers have an rich perfume. I don't know what it is as I've grown it from a cutting, but I call it, a bit prosaically, my cooking rose. I make a beautiful rose sorbet with this rose, and it makes an intensely rose syrup that goes well with custards.  When it's cooked it turns a grey-purple, but after it cools or is frozen it becomes a deep and glorious pink. There were enough blossoms on the bush for me to pick some for the house. Last year I made delicious almond-meal cupcakes glazed with its pink, rose-scented icing.

My yellow tea rose is covered with buds too. I've tried to use this rose in syrups etc but its cool scent and its rich yellow colour don't survive the cooking process. It does, however, dry very well and keeps its colour and scent in a pot pourri.

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