Image by Jake Parkinson from Pixabay
Prepare floral-herbal syrups separately.
Use only pure, organic lavender stems with buds, rosemary sprigs or fragrant red rose petals. English and Provence lavender are most often used for culinary purposes, as they contain the highest oils and flavour.
- For a small batch of syrup, pick and rinse the blooms of 2 or 3 red* roses, gently shake dry, then pull petals off their hips. Discard hips. (* Caution – yellow roses turn syrup a murky brown colour)
- For a small batch of lavender syrup pick up to 12 stems. For rosemary, pick 2 or 3 sprigs. Rinse and shake dry. You won’t need to pull off the buds or leaves. Keep as is, or trim the stems so they can float freely in pot.
- For a small batch of lavender syrup, pick up to 12 stems. Use more for a stronger flavour. For rosemary, pick 2 or 3 sprigs. Rinse and shake dry. You won’t need to pull off the buds or leaves. Keep as is, on their stems.
- Place equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan. Small batch is ½ cup white sugar and ½ cup water. Medium batches use more roses or herbs to taste, to 1 cup water and 1 cup white sugar.
- Over medium heat, whisk until the sugar dissolves, then add the rose petals, or lavender buds or rosemary sprigs and leaves stir well, and remove from heat.
- Cover with lid and steep with the flowers/herbs in the syrup until completely cool.
- Strain out the lavender or rosemary sprigs, or rose petals.
Cover and refrigerate the syrups in a sterilized glass mason jar or bottle for up to two weeks.
Add as desired to either homemade or frozen store lemonade.
Frozen Pink Lemonade for Lavender or Rose syrups, and Yellow lemonade for Rosemary syrups. Follow instructions on the frozen cans, then add flavoured syrup to taste.
Garnish with fresh stems of Lavender or Mint for the Pink Lemonade, or a sprig of fresh Rosemary, or a slice of Lemon for the Yellow Lemonade.
You can keep syrups longer by freezing them into ice cube trays.
P.S. When roses or lavender flowers are out of season… Monin Lavender or Rose Syrup 750ml is a good standby until the next summer. (Can be purchased through Amazon.) They come in a plastic bottle and are more concentrated. Drizzle over ice cream, or splash a wee drop of lavender syrup in your morning Caffè Latte!