Our slide show is all about how to grow rose-scented geraniums in the winter and in the summer, indoors and out; how to propagate cuttings into new plants; and how to use the fragrant leaves in cocktail and dessert recipes. Plus: How to perfume your bath with the leaves!
For my partner’s birthday last year, I covered an ordinary white cake in deliciously fragrant rose geranium icing. Guests actually put their fingers in the mixing bowl to swipe every last trace of the damask-scented goodness!
ROSE GERANIUM ICING
1/3 cup milk 10 fresh, medium-to-large rose geranium leaves (plus extra for optional garnish) 4 cups confectioner's sugar 1 small cake (use your favorite recipes or check out SAVEUR's layer cake recipes) food coloring, in red and blue (optional)
1. In a small saucepan set over medium heat, bring milk to a boil. 2. Remove pan from heat, drop in leaves, and swish them around the pan until they wilt. Then cover and let steep for 15 minutes. 3. When milk has cooled, take out the leaves and, holding them over the milk, wring the leaves with your hands. This will release even more of the rose-essence into the milk. 4. Pour the scented milk over the confectioner's sugar, and whisk until perfectly smooth. If you are using food coloring, as I did, 8 drops of red and 1 drop of blue will produce a rosy hue. 5. Pour the icing over the cake, let it slowly spread over the sides, and puddle at the cake’s base. 6. If you wish, you can garnish the rim of the cake with extra leaves. Remove the leaves before serving; although they are edible, their texture is rather unpleasant.