This time of year every time I walk out the front door I get the heady waft of of roses at the peak of bloom and sometimes I shut my eyes and breathe deeply lingering for a few moments to imprint the scent on my memory.
I decided to try capturing the delicate scent by attempting some homemade rose water! From what I know of the process I thought a home set up might be do-able and got to work searching the interweb for some methods! I found some things, made a slight modification and went to work with rudimentary household utensils (thought I was, in my mind, acquiring glass do-dads and pipe, rubber stopper and connector thingys and burners like a mad scientist to make something a little more sophisticated - next project!).
TIP: You can use your rose water by itself as a refreshing toner or add 10% witch hazel to make an astringent!
Stuff you will need
• about 8 oz of fresh rose petals - preferably that are chemical free and picked in the morning
If you don’t have roses as a neighbor or see if a local florist will give/sell you old roses (that they will probably throw out anyway)
NOTE: I made 2 oz of rose water with 8 oz of fresh petals
• double boiler with a steamer
• ramekin or small heat safe dish
• tin foil ( a stainless steel bowl will work better)
• filtered or distilled water
• Glass jar for storing your rose water
What to do:
This process will take 3-4 hours depending on how many rose petals you pick.
1) clean the picked petals - mine were covered in insects and spiders so I just filled the pot holding my petals to the top with water to flush critters out.
2) set up your pot. Fill the bottom with water so the steamer pan is about 1 inch above the level of the water. Place the ramekin in the center.
3) Put petals around the ramekin, you can really stuff them in just make sure they sit at or below the level of your ramekin.
4) place a sheet of foil over the top so that it is in a concave shape - you can also use a stainless steel bowl.
5) set water to boil and then simmer - put a few ice cubes on the top of your foil - you will have to keep refilling ice and emptying water so a bowl would indeed be better for this! Just make sure the lowest point of the bowl sits above the ramekin and that it completely seals the top of the pot so that rose water does not escape!
6) You will have to refill rose petals every half hour or so - do not remove old ones. You will already see the rose water in the ramekin after just 30 minutes!You may also have to add more water to the double boiler, but just add a few ounces at a time so it does not breach the bottom of the steam pan. After you have added your last batch of rose petals let the whole thing steam for another hour and then you are done! Discard rose petals into the compost heap or back into your garden soil.
Place the rose water in a sterile glass jar and keep in the refrigerator - lasts about a week.
Has anyone tried making floral water with other types of flowers? If so what did you make and what was your method!