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COOKING WITH ROSES RECIPE BY TALLYRAND

Roses grow on you! . . . . .

Cooking with rosesIts week number two for recipes that centre around wildfoods. This week it’s a dish that combines quail and roses . . . yes roses. For centuries, roses have been that special ingredient in creating the finest culinary dishes and something, that for some reason has been forgotten, by-passed or just simply gone out of fashion. Though for me, great food, a great dish can never go out of fashion, how a dish is presented may do, but the a great dish is always a great dish.

A rose dessert dating to the ancient Romans is the earliest recorded recipe using roses as an ingredient that I know of. Other ancient civilisations however also used the sweet, fragrant qualities of their own native rose species. In the Tenth century, it is known that Persia was exporting rosewater to most of Europe, North Africa and Asia, which commonly used as a flavouring agent in cakes, biscuits and pastries dishes. By the medieval Fourteenth century, roses were used extensively in fish and game sauces as well as sweet dishes. Many a royal chef prepared such delights as Roseye of Fysshe (fish in a rose sauce) and Rede Rose (a red rose pudding). While in the Nineteenth century, roses were widely used throughout the world as both a colouring and flavouring agent in teas, sauces, oils, preserves and many, many more dishes.

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Rules when cooking with roses:

  • Never use roses treated with insecticides or fungicides unless those products are approved for food crops!
  • Thoroughly rinse the roses (particularly the petals) before using. Who wants to find a spider or other garden bug in their foods?!
  • Harvest them early in the morning; when the roses are at their best and freshest; they should be fully mature, and about to fade
  • Red roses are by far the best; yellow, orange and mauve-coloured roses tend to turn brown when cooked, while white roses can have diuretic qualities (they help flush the water from the body).

QUAIL WITH A ROSE PETAL STUFFING AND SAUCE

Okay, so quail are very expensive I know, or you don’t fancy them or can’t find quail . . . no problems. This recipe would work equally as well with chicken. You could use a whole chicken or pocket a boneless chicken breast (called a supreme) and stuff them instead.

Ingredients

quail
6
pc
red roses (large)
6
pc
chopped walnuts
100
gm
raisins
100
gm
apple
1
pc
cinnamon
sq
cognac / brandy
50
ml
rosewater
1
tbs
stale bread slices
12
pc
water - hot
sq
     
anise powder
1/4
tsp
garlic clove
1
pc
orange juice - fresh
150
ml
cognac / brandy
100
ml
grenedine
1
tbs
rose water
1
tbs
chestnut purée
1
tbs

Method

  • Rinse, remove the petal and rinse six roses (the larger outer petals are best)
  • Slice them with a pair of scissors and separate into four equal amounts, set aside
  • Combine the walnuts, raisins, apples (cored and roughly chopped), with a pinch of cinnamon to taste and allow to macerate with the cognac/brandy and 1 tablespoon of rosewater
  • Tear the bread into small pieces and moisten with hot water until the consistency is a firm paste (do not over moisten)
  • Add a quarter of the rose petals and the all the walnuts etc (the Cognac maybe added also if preferred, otherwise strain and reserve for the sauce)
  • Mix lightly but thoroughly by hand until well blended and stuff the quail with this mixture, tie the quails legs to preserve their shape
  • Placing any left over stuffing into the bottom of a ceramic, oven proof dish. The quail will sit on this for cooking and will impart more flavour to them
  • In large mortar, add the anise to two parts of the rose petals (reserving the last amount for garnish), grind with the pestle to a very wet purée and set aside
  • Heat the thinly sliced garlic in a large saute pan with a little olive oil until it releases its aroma, orange juice, Cognac, grenedine, rose water and chestnut purée
  • Heat lightly while stirring to combine until warm (if the chestnut purée is thick and lumpy strain the sauce and push the purée through the strainer) season with a little salt and pepper to taste and stir in the rose petal puree, remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly
  • Marinate the stuffed, trussed quail in the sauce for 15 minutes
  • Remove the quail from the sauce, and place in the ceramic dish on top of the remaining stuffing, lightly brush with some melted butter or olive oil
  • Cover with a tin foil and roast for 20 minutes at 180º (brush every 5 minutes with melted butter/olive oil)
  • While the quail are cooking re-heat the sauce and thicken if required with a little arrowroot or cornflour mixed with water
  • Remove the foil from the quail and allow to brown for five more minutes
  • Serve on a platter with some wild rice in the middle, the quail fanned out around it, garnish with small bunches of red seedless grapes and the remaining shredded roses strewn over top

Rosewater Recipe

  • Pick 2 cups of scented petals and push the petals down so they are packed tightly (the fresher the better of course)
  • Place in stainless steel or enamel saucepan and cover with cold, soft water (rainwater or distilled is best)
  • Bring almost to a boil, allow to cool and strain (be careful not to actually boil the water)
  • Refrigerated it will remain scented for 7 days

Chef's Tip

Red Roses cause the water to turn a pale pink, other coloured roses turn the water a brownish yellow muddy colour. The actual ratio of roses to water depends on the colour and fragrance desired.

Enjoy and bon appetit . . . . .

Chef's terminology:

  lt
=
litres   tsp = teaspoon
  ml
=
millelitres   tbs = tablespoon
  kg
=
kilograms   sq = sufficient quantity (add to taste)
  gm
=
grams   pc = piece, meaning a whole one of

Tallyrand
Recipe from professional
Chef Tallyrand

Email Hub-UK : info@hub-uk.com