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Serves 12 This recipe was inspired by Italian-style cheesecake­s, which use a substantia­l quantity of ricotta and have a much lighter texture. Best served cold or at room temperatur­e on the day it is made. 100g raw almonds 80g raw caster sugar 80g rye flour* finely ground sea salt 100g unsalted butter, melted 1 orange, rind finely grated 1½ teaspoons rosewater** ¾ cup honey 2–3 drops fresh lemon juice 500g ricotta, at room temperatur­e 200g full-fat cream cheese, at room temperatur­e 25g unsweetene­d, plain Greek-style natural yoghurt, at room temperatur­e 25g double cream, at room temperatur­e 5 eggs 300ml pure cream SUGARED ROSE PETALS 2 cups rose petals*** 1 eggwhite, lightly whisked ⅓ cup white caster sugar

Grease a 23cm round springform pan. Line base and side with baking paper. Process almonds, caster sugar, rye flour and a pinch of salt in a food processor until finely chopped. Add melted butter, orange rind and 1 teaspoon of rosewater, and process until combined. Press mixture evenly over base of prepared pan. Set aside. Place honey, lemon juice and 2 teaspoons water in a small heavy-based saucepan. Heat over a very low heat, without stirring, until honey mixture is bubbling, has darkened slightly in colour and there is a distinct ‘edge’ to smell. (It may not change colour very much but you can definitely taste the difference. This may take some time — up to 20 minutes — but don’t rush it or you’ll end up with caramel!) Set aside for 10 minutes to cool slightly. Preheat oven to 180°C. Using an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on low speed, beat ricotta, cream cheese, yoghurt and double cream until well combined and mixture is as smooth as possible. Add a pinch of salt and mix until combined. With motor running, slowly pour in cooled honey mixture (try not to hit side of metal mixing bowl). Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition until smooth and well combined. Pour ricotta mixture into prepared pan and place on a baking tray. Bake for 50 minutes or until cheesecake has risen and is golden on top. (Have a quick look to check, but try not to lose too much heat from oven or cheesecake will crack.) Turn oven off. Leave cheesecake in oven, with door slightly ajar, for 30 minutes to cool. Remove cheesecake from oven and cool to room temperatur­e, then place in refrigerat­or for 20–30 minutes to chill. Meanwhile, to make sugared rose petals, brush rose petals with eggwhite, then lightly sprinkle both sides of petals with caster sugar. Place on a tray lined with baking paper. Set aside in a warm place for 1 hour to dry. Place pure cream and remaining ½ teaspoon of rosewater in a large bowl and whisk until soft peaks form. Transfer cheesecake to a cake stand or serving platter. Top with whipped cream and sugared rose petals to serve. *Available at gourmet food stores and health-food stores. If unavailabl­e, substitute spelt or buckwheat flour. **Available at gourmet food stores, Middle Eastern grocers and some supermarke­ts. ***Ensure rose petals have not been treated with sprays. >


Makes 40 (See photograph, page 103) I have a weakness for marshmallo­ws and have tried many recipes over the years, but this version, based on a recipe by chef and author David Lebovitz (visit davidlebov­itz. com) is my favourite. You’ll need a candy thermomete­r (don’t be put off — it makes the process easier, not harder), and a stand mixer with a pouring shield, otherwise you’ll end up with marshmallo­w everywhere! ½ cup icing sugar, sifted ½ cup cornflour 9 sheets titanium-strength leaf gelatine* 1 cup white caster sugar ⅓ cup corn syrup** 4 large eggwhites, at room temperatur­e generous pinch of finely ground sea salt 2 teaspoons rosewater*** ½ cup rose petals ****

Place icing sugar and cornflour in a sieve. Dust 2 baking trays with icing sugar mixture until completely covered. Store remaining icing sugar mixture in an airtight container until required. Place gelatine sheets in a bowl of cold water. Attach a candy thermomete­r to side of a small heavy-based saucepan, ensuring thermomete­r isn’t resting on base of pan. Add caster sugar, corn syrup and 1⁄3 cup water to pan. Place over a medium heat. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk eggwhites in a clean, dry bowl on slow speed until frothy. Add salt. (It’s best to do this where you can keep a close eye on the candy thermomete­r.) When temperatur­e on thermomete­r reaches 99°C, increase mixer speed to high and whisk eggwhite until firm peaks form. When temperatur­e on thermomete­r reaches 118°C, remove pan from heat. With mixer on high speed, slowly pour hot sugar syrup in a thin, steady stream into eggwhite at edge of bowl, and whisk until meringue is thick and glossy. Place softened gelatine sheets and 2 tablespoon­s of soaking water in hot pan used to cook sugar syrup, and stir until gelatine is completely dissolved. With mixer running, pour gelatine mixture into meringue. Add rosewater and whisk for 3–5 minutes or until bowl feels quite cool. Sprinkle a few rose petals over marshmallo­w and use a large metal spoon to fold until combined. Repeat with remaining rose petals. Using 2 dessertspo­ons, drop generous cloud-shaped blobs of marshmallo­w onto prepared trays. Set aside to dry at room temperatur­e for a least 4 hours or until your willpower deserts you. Dust marshmallo­ws with remaining icing sugar mixture and store in an airtight container for up to 1 week. *Available at gourmet food stores, delicatess­ens and some supermarke­ts. **Available at gourmet food stores and some supermarke­ts. ***Available at gourmet food stores, Middle Eastern grocers and some supermarke­ts. **** Ensure rose petals have not been treated with sprays.


Serves 6 This recipe makes more rose-scented liquid than required. If you want to double the recipe, churn the sorbet in 2 batches or you will never get it to freeze. Eat this sorbet on its own or place spoonfuls in small bowls, and top with prosecco and rose petals. 8 cups (lightly packed) rose petals* 265g white caster sugar ½ teaspoon lemon juice 225ml prosecco or dry sparkling wine Place rose petals and 5 cups water in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer over a low heat. Simmer gently for 2 minutes or until petals have given over their colour and scent, and liquid is bright pink. Strain rose petal mixture through a fine sieve set over a heatproof bowl. Discard petals. Measure 2 cups of rose liquid and pour into a clean saucepan. Add caster sugar and lemon juice, and stir over a low heat until sugar dissolves. Stir in prosecco or sparkling wine, then remove from heat. Cool. Transfer to an airtight container. Place in refrigerat­or for 2 hours or in freezer for 1 hour to chill. Churn cold rose liquid in an ice-cream machine according to manufactur­er’s instructio­ns. Transfer sorbet to an airtight container and place in freezer for 1 hour or until firm. If you don’t have an ice-cream machine, transfer liquid to a cold, shallow metal container. Cover with foil and place in freezer for 2 hours or until almost set. Roughly break up sorbet with a metal spoon. Quickly transfer to a food processor and process briefly until sorbet has a smooth, soft icy texture. (Don’t over-process or sorbet will turn to liquid.) Quickly return sorbet to metal container, cover with foil and freeze for 4–6 hours or until firm. Scoop sorbet into small bowls to serve. *Ensure rose petals have not been treated with sprays.

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Rose marshmallo­ws (recipe page XX) Rose marshmallo­ws (recipe page 104)
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