Scented sugars easily can be made the same way the Europeans have been making vanilla sugar for years. Placing a vanilla bean (or rose petals) in a pint jar of sugar transforms the sugar into a pleasing, fragrant baking ingredient. Sweet aromatic flowers can be used to make scented sugar–traditionally, rose, violet and lavender blooms are used. MAKES 1 PINT OF SCENTED SUGAR
1. To prepare scented sugar, use a clean pint jar with a tight-fitting lid. Fill the jar about one-third full with sugar, and scatter a small handful of very fragrant rose petals over the sugar.
2. Cover petals with sugar so the jar is two-thirds full; add another small handful of flower petals and cover with sugar to fill the jar, leaving about 1/2-inch headspace.
3. Shake the jar and place on a shelf in a cool, dark place. The sugar will be ready to use in two to three weeks and will become more flavorful with age. As the sugar is used, add more plain sugar, which will take on the fragrance in the jar.
Susan Belsinger loves immersing herself in all things herbal and looks forward to researching, growing, cooking and photographing each new Herb of the Year.
To read more about roses, see the International Herb Association’s book, Rose, Herb of the Year 2012, edited by Susan Belsinger. To purchase, visit The International Herb Association website.
Click here for the main article, 2012 Herb of the Year: The Rose (Rosa spp.).