We recently held a competition to win The Thrifty Forager – by Alys Fowler it’s a fantastically interesting book on living of the land.
Just so you can see how good it is, here’s an extract from the book. It’s Alys Fowler’s recipe for Rose Petal Jam…
250g (90 oz) rose petals (that’s roughly a quarter of a standard carrier bag of petals). I mix pink dog rose with creamy yellow, highly scented rose from my garden
1.1 litres (2 pints) water
Juice of 2 lemons
450g (1lb) granulated sugar
The petals may have a few bugs on them, so shake them free of any intruders, place in a bowl, add half the sugar and leave for several hours or overnight. This infuses the rose flavour into the sugar and darkens the petals.
In a heavy-based pan, add the water, lemon juice and remaining sugar, then gently heat until all the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the rose petals and simmer for 20 minutes or until the rose petals look as if they are melting and have softened – pull a few out and chew if necessary, they should melt in your mouth but have a slight bite. Turn the heat up and bring to a rapid boil for 5 minutes or until setting point is reached. Remove any scum that may have risen to the top and allow to cool slightly, stirring gently so that the petals are evenly distributed. Cover and bottle as usual.
Alys Fowler’s The Thrifty Forager is available from Kyle Books at £16.99.