A lifestyle blog about life and living in Southeast, Alaska.
Rose Petal Gin & Tonic
June 9, 2016
I told my husband the other day that I haven't ever really taken time to see all that happens in the months before summer. Taken time to stop and smell the roses. At first the cherry trees bloom, then tulips, spruce tips, lilacs, and now roses. All one right after another, and now the fireweed is starting to get lively and full before it sprouts it's beautiful purple flowers. I now know that every spring and summer I get to look forward to harvesting and smelling all these beautiful things that Southeast Alaska offers us.
When we found out we were pregnant with our daughter, Loralai, I made the hard decision to resign from teaching. I loved my job teaching at the school and all the staff but the stress of working was starting to reflect at home and I knew that I wanted to take the time to raise my children. Going from working 50 hrs a week to "working" as a full time mommy was no longer stressful but more tiring! I also found myself to be a bit lazier, maybe even messier, because I no longer was on a set schedule and if the kitchen wasn't cleaned right away I knew I had tomorrow to do it.
My friend Genny (a brand new mom to baby Hugh James) just recently came back to Haines after a year long stint in Whitehorse, Canada to help open a fresh seafood store, The Haines Packing Co. - Whitehorse, with her husband Harry. Genny stayed in Whitehorse for over a year to make the store a successful and popular spot for Canadians, while Harry commuted once a week to bring up fresh fish. They also found out they were going to have a baby during their busy year and Genny new she wanted to no longer be in Whitehorse when the baby was born, she wanted to be home in Haines. Genny and Harry live in a beautiful home right by the sea and directly across from the cannery where they process the fish. The house sits next to hundreds maybe even a thousand wild rose bushes. Genny asked me the other day "Now that we are stay at home moms, do you want to go pick roses and make rose petal simple syrup?" Um...of course! I am always up to try something new and I knew it would also be a fun little adventure with my kids. I mean, what kids wouldn't want to pick rose petals by the ocean and enjoy being outside?
Well, to keep a long story short, let's just say in our rose petal picking stint their was whining, tears, a baby powder explosion in Harry and Genny's house that had just been professionally cleaned that morning, a very angry house cat, dog water spillage, and my husband ending up at the clinic getting stitches because he sliced open his finger with a knife mending crab pots. Yes, a true tale and it all happened before 11am.
So later on that day when I was making dinner and my husband walked in with a bottle of gin from Port Chilkoot Distillery, a smile from ear to ear appeared on my face! My husband loves a good gin & tonic and the weather has been muggy and hot and it sounded so good (especially since the morning was a bit crazy)! Since I had picked all the rose petals I knew I wanted to infuse the gin & tonic with the rose flavor.
I looked on Pinterest and couldn't find a recipe that gave me a direct answer when I searched for "rose petal water". So I ended up making it myself, with a 1 to 1 ratio. 1 part lightly packed rose petals to 1 part water. I ended up getting about 10 cups of rose petals so I used 10 cups of water. I then turned my burner on high to get it to a boil and then simmered the rose petals for a half an hour and then turned it off (my house smelled amazing). I left it on my stove for 3 hours to get it to cool before I used it to make my simple syrup.
I strained my rose petal water through a small fruit strainer then to make the simple syrup I also used a 1 to 1 ratio. 1 part rose water to 1 part sugar. I simmered this on the stove for 3-5 minutes after it boiled and then immediately put it in a glass jar container. I also put a small dash of gin (a tsp) to help it preserve in the fridge for a couple weeks.
Now to assemble the Rose Petal Gin & Tonic I muddled 2 lime wedges (smashed them in the bottom of the cup with the wooden spoon basically) to release the juice and zest. I poured in 1 tablespoon of my rose petal simply syrup and filled the cup with ice. I then poured 1 1/2 oz. of Port Chilkoot Distillery Gin, topped it off with tonic water, and a lime wedge.
The infused cocktail tasted so good and I am thankful that I live in a place where we can get an abundant amount of these beautiful aromatic flowers. But more so I am thankful for friends who want to pick flowers and try new things. And for husbands who can make their wife smile at the end of a very long "stay at home mommy" day.
Rose Petal Simple Syrup
1 part rose petal water
to 1 part sugar
1 tsp. vodka (or gin)
1. Turn burner to high until it boils
2. Simmer for 3-5 minutes and stir
3. Allow to cool and pour in 1 tsp vodka and stir
4. Pour into glass jar and keep for up to 2 weeks in fridge
Rose Petal Gin & Tonic
1 Tbsp rose petal simple syrup
1.5 oz. of Gin
1. Muddle lime wedges on bottom of glass
2. Pour in rose petal simple syrup
3. Add gin, ice, and tonic water!
Enjoy! And make sure to drink responsibly.
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!