An unusual dessert.
- a handful of perfumed, red rose petals
- 550 ml water
- 125 g granulated sugar
- 3-4 tablespoons rose water
- a little pink vegetable colouring – optional
- 2 egg whites
- a few bright green, glossy rose leaves
- Put a shallow plastic container which will hold 1 litre/2 pints into the freezer to chill.
- Wash the rose petals gently, then put into a saucepan with the water.
- Bring to the boil, cover and leave off the heat for 15-30 minutes so that the rose petals infuse the water.
- Strain through a sieve, pressing as much of the water out of the petals as you can.
- If the amount of water has reduced, make up to a pint again with cold water.
- Put back into a saucepan with the sugar and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved.
- Add the rose water and a few drops of colouring to intensify the pink of the syrup if necessary – remember the colour will be further toned-down when the egg whites are added.
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool, then pour into the chilled container.
- Freeze until there is a solid layer about 2.5cm/1 inch round the edges.
- Break this up with a fork.
- Whisk the egg whites until stiff and standing in peaks, but not dry, then add the frozen rose syrup, still whisking, to make a thick fluffy mixture.
- Pour back into the container and freeze again until solid.
- Take the sorbet out of the freezer and stand it on a shelf in the fridge an hour before you want to eat it, giving it time to soften.
- Put spoonfuls of the sorbet in individual glasses and tuck a few fresh green rose leaves around the edge of each, to give a rosebud effect.