This is my mum's recipe for rose syrup - and the name of their cottage in England! Try to use old English shrub roses, as they are highly fragranced and impart a delicate flavour to the syrup. The correct word for this recipe would be a Shrub or a Ratafia, as it is fortified with brandy - however, Ratafia would also have fruit or almond kernels added; it would have been offered as a refreshing "pick-me-up" to gentile ladies - with water or lemonade added of course! This recipe is well over 100 years old and a bottle of this would make an unusual and delighttful gift.
- Boil the sugar and water to a clear syrup. Alow it to cool and when it is a little more than blood-warm, pour it over half a pound of fresh red rose petals. Cover it with muslin or a tea towel, and leave it in a cool, dark place for twenty-four hours.
- On the second day, strain into a clean container, and then add the second supply of rose petals.
- On the third day put in the last half pound of rose petals and leave to infuse for one more day.
- On the fourth day, strain through a muslin bag or a mesh sieve into a clean conatiner. Add the brandy; then strain again through a muslin bag or a mesh sieve, stir well and bottle.
- This liqueur syrup is delightful as a beverage, mixed with sparkling water or lemonade; it is also wonderful when added to flavour custards, creams, desserts, cheesecakes or ice creams.