Recently Rowan and I read The Homeschool Liberation League. One of the interests of the main character is eating food that grows wild. I’ve been interested myself lately in learning more about what’s edible. There’s an amazing amount of food growing around us that we think of as weeds or ornamentation.

I always knew roses were edible, but I really didn’t know what to do with them. This weekend I tried out a recipe for rose petal jelly. I’ve made lots of preserves, but this was my first jelly. It’s a simple one to start with.

I used petals from the Rose of Sharon we inherited from whoever landscaped our pool area.







3-1/4 cup rose petals or any edible flower petals (be sure they have not been sprayed with anything you wouldn’t want to eat)

2 cups water

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup white grape juice

1 package powdered fruit pectin

3 cups sugar

1/4 cup rose petals

Remove bitter white nail of all the rose petals. Rinse petals and pat dry. Bring the 3-1/4 cups rose petals, water, and 1/2 cup sugar to a boil; reduce heat.

Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Let stand, covered, for several hours to overnight.

Strain syrup, discarding flowers.

Combine syrup, grape juice, and pectin in a saucepan; mix well. Bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Add remaining 3 cups sugar; mix well. Bring to a full rolling boil that will not stir down. Boil for 1 minute; remove from heat.

Place remaining 1/4 cup rose petals into 4 hot sterilized 1/2 pint jars (or 2 pint jars, if you’re me). Ladle jelly into jars, leaving a 1/2-inch headspace; seal with 2-piece lids. Drape jars with a towel. Cool to room temperature and store in a cool place.

Yields 2 pints.

All of the color comes from the petals. The color leaches out of them very quickly when you first start to cook them. In the morning the syrup is a beautiful purple (the picture doesn’t do it justice), which lightens up to pink as you add the other ingredients. Most importantly – yum.

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