Rose Petal Lemonade
Foraging for rose petal lemonade was certainly a grasping of fortune last week. I had observed wintered rose bushes on a previous early spring adventure, the dried brown rose hips and it's thorns almost indistinguishable from the surrounding dead growth. Spring was just showing face then. I had checked again for signs of life a few weeks ago and although there were no rose buds, there was lively green foliage to give me hope. How excited I was to have my sister text me a picture of her wild rose petals last week! I texted her some ideas (including this cold infusion / rose petal lemonade) on what to do with them and later that day while we were in town, made for the wild area where I spotted the original rose bushes.
Indeed, the day proved fruitful. I took only what I needed. A cup for Rose Petal Lemonade and a cup to dry for rose tea.
What is a cold infusion?
This is a cold infusion (rather than hot infusion like tea). A cold infusion is a drink prepared by soaking leaves in liquid over a few hours to extract the properties and taste of that plant. So it's like tea but made in your refrigerator.
Why a cold infusion versus a hot infusion?
A hot infusion is herbal teas, steeping the plant in hot, almost boiling water. A cold infusion doesn't use hot water. It uses cold or room-temp then infuses the plant over several hours. A cold infusion will have a different flavor profile than a hot infusion of the same plant. Some fresh plants might actually wilt under boiling water and therefore might not be the effective way to enjoy said plant.
I took a class from Pascal Baudar, the author of Wildcrafted Fermentation, and he said that as long as you have some acid and a little sugar, no bad bacteria will grow in a cold infusion (if kept in fridge) for a week. He uses cold infusions often to capture "the flavor of a place". I loved the idea of capturing a moment in time just by foraging what was around me.
Rose Petal Lemonade
1 cup rose petals, unsprayed and washed gently
1 cup lemon juice
5 cups water
1/2 cup organic sugar (or honey like in my Nettle Lemonade)
Add all ingredients and stir.
Drink and enjoy! Strain the rose petals if giving to kids (otherwise they might choke on them).
Also for another Rose Recipe, try out my Rose Petal Honey.
I noticed Amazon is having a 3 for 2 sale on books right now! I saw these foraging books included. I'm really enjoying the Wild Remedies book and I order the Skillful Forager as well. I do have the Forager's Feast but haven't read it as thoroughly. It is on my TBR list and looks like a great resource. I also noticed Pascal Baudar, who I mention previously in this post, has his Wildcrafted Fermentation book in the 3 for 2 book sale. If you need a book on identifying, these books are all great or Sergei Boutenko's Wild Edibles, also in the 3 for 2 sale!