Rose Water has a rich history!
Rose water is just as simple as it sounds: it’s water distilled with pesticide-free rose petals to extract their essence. They gently boil the flower petals in purified water, and then they capture and condense the heavily-scented steam. This produces a highly fragrant liquid with a subtle floral flavor.
Because of it’s use in Persian and Indian foods and pastries, many people think of rose water as exotic and unusual, but that wasn’t always the case! Before vanilla extract became accessible and affordable in the United States, rose water was as ubiquitous in Colonial American baked goods as vanilla is today! In fact, when vanilla extract was first becoming popular with American bakers, it was basically used as a fancy, exotic substitute for rose water! Crazy right?
Al Wadi Al Akhdar Rose Water
The rose water we carry at Whisk comes from Al Wadi Al Akhdar. They’ve been a leading Lebanese food brand throughout the world since 1979. They combine traditional and exotic touches with the latest food technology to bring high-quality authentic ingredients to the global market. They focus on traditional Lebanese & Middle Eastern specialties, and their flower essences are known to be some of the finest on the market.
Uses for Rose Water
Rose water can be a surprise to people who have never tried it before. The scent is highly floral and perfume-y, like walking through a rose garden in full bloom! The flavor is pleasantly bitter and reinforces the floral notes in ingredients like cinnamon, cardamom, honey, or pistachios.
While traditionally used to add a subtle fragrance to sweets, pastries, and some savory dishes; rose water also lends itself perfectly to use in craft cocktails as well. Used sparingly, rose water can give your recipes an elegant otherworldly quality, but be careful not to add too much! A few extra drops can take your recipe from delicate, subtle, and refined, to a big musty ol’ swig from Grandma’s perfume bottle. It’s best to start with a quarter teaspoon or so in your recipes, and then taste before deciding if you’d like to go any further.
Rose water is an incredibly versatile addition to both your pantry and your bar cart. Once you start experimenting with adding it to your favorite recipes, you won’t be able to stop! If you’re still unsure how you could use it yourself at home, please watch the video cocktail recipe below for a little inspiration!
2 oz good rye whiskey
1 oz sweet vermouth
1 tablespoon cherry jam
2 to 3 dashes aromatic bitters
1/4 teaspoon rose water
1 or 2 Luxardo maraschino cherries, if desired
Combine the whiskey, vermouth, jam, bitters, and rose water in a cocktail shaker with plenty of ice. Be careful not to add too much rosewater or it can overpower the drink.
Shake shake shake the cocktail until the shaker is ice cold and frosty on the outside, a good minute or so. Strain over ice into a rocks glass. Double strain to remove all the fruit solids from the jam if desired. Garnish with Luxardo maraschino cherries.