Damask Rose Petal Jam

The sweet strong fragrance of the Damask Rose petals is highly intoxicating not to mention delicious.  Native to the Orient, each bloom of the Rosa Damascena bears more then 30 aromatic petals as its loose upright shrubs stand nearly 5-feet high showcasing stems that are wild and thorny with downy grey green leaves.

The petals of the Damask Rose are great for potpourri and very effective used for aromatherapy.

Growing up, though, all I knew about this rose was its full flavor in the form of a preserve spread served with hot out of the oven croissants, other days with with a piece of crispy pita accompanied by Tel Paneer (authentic string cheese) cucumbers and fresh mint.  This jam is also delightful spread on a slice of pound cake, a scone, or sourdough toast with mascarpone cheese or fresh ricotta.

8 to 10 oz. rose petals, loosely packed
6 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 3/4 cups water
4 tablespoons lemon juice

Gently rinse the petals in a colander. Then slice petals and place them with the water in a sauce pan and boil until the petals turn a pale pink – almost white in color. Add the sugar and give it a soft stir and continue to boil uncovered until liquid becomes syrupy. Add the lemon juice and bring liquid to boil again removing any foam that form on top. Turn heat off and cool jam thoroughly. Place jam in jars with tight lids and enjoy. Yields 2-1/2 cups and keep well in refrigerator for a few months.

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