For a while now, I have been thinking about making wild rose ice cream. We have a tiny house upstate circled by dense woods. Lately with this temperate summer things have gone a bit rogue up there but I love it. The house is surrounded by an ever thickening bramble of blackberries and wild roses. We planted some Rosa Ragosa when we bought the house a number of years ago. I wasn't sure how it would fare in the elevated colder climate but it has thrived and has taken over some of the other roses. I have always loved the Ragosa which grows wild along the New England coast. They remind me of the rugged coast of Maine where they dot the shore to form a dense wind break between the long the sea grasses and the ocean. The Rosa Ragosa is a single petal rose. For such a wispypy rose it gives off some serious floral perfume that is both a little spicy and salty. Maybe I imagine the salty part because I associated it so much with misty foggy days and salty sea spray. I could never resist these not even as a kid even though they are terribly riddled with tiny sharp spiky thorns. This past weekend Chef Camille Becerra came up to hang out in the woods and we decided to make some rose ice cream (amongst other things..but more on that in another post!)
I would only do this with roses that are one hundred percent organic. NO PESTICIDES!
I believe there are places where you can order organic rose petals for cooking but I will have to look into it and post some info on that later.
The ice cream was so lovely and really well balanced. We decided to use a local maple syrup from our friend Dan Finn who sells his Moonshine Maple at his farm in Delhi and at Table On Ten in Bloomville., instead of sugar and the combination was really complimentary.
This is a subtle ice cream it is not for those of you who need a big flavor punch, it is mellow ice cream, kind of like a foggy day at the beach. xx
Rosa Ragosa Ice Cream
4 cups heavy cream
4 cups of fresh organic rose petals washed but not wet.
2 cups whole milk
1.5 cups maple syrup
2 good pinches of grey celtic sea salt
8 large egg yolks ( preferably from super happy chickens!)
I collected some Rose petals first thing in the morning when they seemed to be most fragrant.
In a large bowl gently bruise the rose petals by crushing them just a bit with a wooden spoon
Combine the rose petals and the heavy cream in a heavy bottomed sauce pan and heat to a simmer. remove from the heat and let the roses steep in the cream for thirty minutes or so.
In another pot, combine the milk and 1 cup of the maple syrup and bring to a gentle simmer.
Remove from the heat and set aside while you whisk the eggs.
In a bowl whisk the egg yolks and the remaining half cup of maple syrup.
Whisk until the yolks start to ribbon.
Add the hot milk to the yolks gradually whisking throughout to temper the yolks.
Return the mixture to the saucepan and gently heat until the mixture evenly coats the back of a wooden spoon. Do not let the custard boil!
Strain the rose petals from the cream now that it has infused for a good while.
Press the petals against the mesh/strainer to release any remaining oil in the roses.
Discard the petals at this time.
Stir the infused cream gently into the custard and place in the fridge until it is good and cold all the way through.
At this point you can run your mixture through an ice cream machine.
My opinion on ice cream makers is the better the machine the better the ice cream. I have made some good ice creams with my freezer bowl/ Cuisinart maker but now I really see the difference that a better machine makes.
I will include a link to a couple below.
So that is it! just garnish with a few rose petals and you are set to go.