The rose is the iconic symbol of love and a favorite Valentine’s gift. Every year, an estimated 224 million roses are grown just for Valentine’s Day! Roses are beautiful, but for many, the way to the heart is through the stomach.
That makes these mini apple roses a veritable feast for the eyes and the taste buds. They may look fancy, but they’re surprisingly simple to make with just a few leftover apples and some puff pastry.
These roses are basically rolled-up apple tarts made by rolling sweet-tart apple slices in a light, buttery puff pastry. You’ll paint each strip of pastry with an apricot glaze to lend even more flavor, and then sprinkle them with rose sugar to impart the sweet, fresh scent of real roses.
If you prefer a more traditional apple pie flavor, use a mixture of cinnamon and sugar in your pastry, or sprinkle your roses with powdered sugar as a final garnish. You can make a big bunch of roses using muffin tins, or bake up just a pair of larger ones in glass ramekins.
Consider serving up these different, luxurious Valentine’s Day treats with vanilla ice cream to show your loved ones some love all year long!
About roses as an ingredient
Using roses in food might sound strange to us here in the Western world, but it’s quite common elsewhere. The practice originated in ancient Persia, where rose flavoring is still common in baked goods, syrups, ice creams and other delicacies.
Rose sugar is perfect for baking, and adds a delicious flavor to drinks such as tea, lemonade — and even champagne.
While you can buy rose sugar online or in specialty stores, you can make your own very easily: Just layer rose petals in a sealed jar of sugar, and you’ll have rose-infused crystals in as little as a week. (Be sure to use organic, pesticide-free roses.)
Mini apple roses dusted with rose sugar
Serves 6 roses
- 1/2 package puff pastry sheets (1 sheet), thawed
- 2 red apples, sliced (red delicious works well)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice (from 1/2 lemon)
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1-1/2 tablespoons apricot preserves
- 1-1/2 tablespoons rose-flavored sugar
- Remove the package of puff pastry from freezer and allow to thaw for about 25 minutes.
- Pour water into a bowl halfway up. Add lemon juice and mix.
- Cut the apples in half, place face down with skin side up, and slice in thin slices, leaving the peel on. Place the apple slices immediately in lemon water.
- Microwave the apples in the bowl for approximately 3 minutes. This softens the apples and allows them to roll more easily.
- In a small bowl, mix three tablespoons of apricot preserves with two tablespoons of water. Microwave for about one minute.
- Using a brush, spread a thin layer of preserves on each strip of dough.
- Unwrap the puff pastry. Place on a lightly floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough stretching it into a rectangular shape (approximately 12 “x 9”). Cut the dough into 6 strips, each about 3” x 9”).
- Preheat the oven to 375 F degrees.
- Drain the apples.
- Arrange the apple slices on the dough approximately 1/4” down from the top of the dough, overlapping one another. Lightly press each apple to keep in place.
- Sprinkle with rose sugar.
- Make sure the top (skin side) of the slices sticks a little out of the strip.
- Fold up the bottom part of the dough overlapping the bottom edge of the apples.
- Spoon or brush the apricot mixture over the apples.
- Sprinkle with more Rose sugar on top of the apricot/apple mixture.
- Starting from one end, carefully roll the dough, keeping the apple slices in place. Seal the edge at the end, pressing with your finger, and place each rose in a muffin cup.
- Repeat the process for all 6 roses.
- Using a 6-muffin cup pan, grease each cup with butter and flour, or use cooking spray.
- Bake at 375°F degrees for about 30-35 minutes, until fully cooked.
- Remove from oven. Sprinkle with extra rose sugar.
- Serve warm.
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