7 Aug 2013

Rose: Herbs We Love For Summer

Rose. The Queen of Flowers has origins in the Middle East, and has been cultivated and cherished the world over since antiquity. The oldest known rose bush is believed to be at least 1000 years old, growing on the walls of the Cathedral of Hildesheim, in Germany.

Subject of many a sonnet and poem, lauded by mystics, saints, and lovers, rose is made into perfumed oils, soaps, bath soaks, creams, teas, and floral waters. Edible uses include elixirs, vinegars, baked goods, teas, creams, sorbets, drinks, and cordials.

rose parfait

The heart-like flower has long been associated with heart-based emotions, like love, passion, and friendship. Recognizing the connection between mind/body/spirit, herbalists use rose to help heal broken and grieving hearts, and for circulatory systems affected by inflammation and high cholesterol. Rose is a cooling astringent with skin soothing properties.

What can one learn upon meditating on the rose? To be soft yet strong, gentle yet protective. To open up and give your sweet nature to others while remaining centered and grounded.

rose and berry parfait

With its sweet, cooling, uplifting qualities, rose is one of our favorite herbs for summer! Try it out in lemonades, teas, and sorbets. Rose blends well with flavors like lemon, raspberry, cardamom, and pistachio. Parfait, anyone? Check out our rose dessert recipe below: it’s sugar-free, vegan, raw, gluten-free, healthy, and delicious. A powerful high speed blender such as a VitaMix is recommended but not required.

rose parfait

Lemon-Rose Raspberry Parfait

Serves 2 – 3

1 organic lemon
1 heaping tablesoon bulk, organic roses
1 heaping cup whole, raw cashews
3-4 pitted Medjool dates
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
4-5 ounces shelled pistachios
12 ounces fresh raspberries

Lemon-Rose Water Directions
Heat 1 and 1/4 cup water in a covered pan or kettle to just boiling
Remove from heat, let cool for a minute or two
Add hot water to 1 heaping tablespoon organic, dried roses
Steep for two minutes and then strain, pressing down on roses
Add two tablespoons of fresh lemon juice (enjoy the sudden vibrant pink color as the lemon acid reacts with rose!)
Stir in 1 tablespoon of lemon zest
Refridgerate to hasten cooling

Cashew-Cream Directions
Soak one heaping cup whole raw cashews for 4-6 hours
Drain and rinse
Place cashews in a high speed blender (VitaMix recommended)
Pour 1/2 cup Lemon-Rose Water over the cashews
Add a 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
Add pitted and halved dates
Blend on high until smooth, adding in more Lemon-Rose Water as needed (not too much or the cream will turn runny)
Add dates and blend on high until smooth and creamy
Refrigerate to firm

To Make the Parfait
Place a thin layer of crushed pistachios in parfait glass or cup
Add a layer of Cashew Cream
Add raspberries over the Cream
Add more Cream
Continue until layers reach top, then garnish with raspberries and crushed pistachios
Chill, then serve and enjoy!

rose dessert