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Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Garden of True Hearts, Roses. How to Bless, Dry and Make Rose Water Antiseptic, Perfume, Beads, Potpourri, Topiary, Sugar, Candied and Distilled Rose Water!

Curative Power of Rose Water

Roses are beautiful and pleasing to the eye!

They also help cool and nourish the physical and emotional body. Rose water has been used for centuries for its curative purposes. Rose treat heart, nerves and lift the spirits, reduce inflammation, stop sweating, and effective for menopausal hot sweats and summer prickly heat. Rose water is used as a spray to freshen up quickly. It can also be used as a wash to reduce skin scars and oily skin.

Rose water was first obtained by distilling roses in Persia. From attar of roses or rose oil, rose perfumes are made. Rose oil is a mixture of essential oils obtained from steam-distilling the crushed petals of roses. Rose water is used in cosmetics. It is essentially used as toner for fair and dry skin. It is also a key ingredient in many sweet drinks.

As the name says, rose water is the most effective liquid nature has ever produced. Rose water smells and tastes of roses. Rose water is produced in the form of leftover liquid when rose petals and water are distilled together for making rose oil. Steam distillation was probably first used by the Arabian doctor in the 10th century. Rose water is made using damask roses and Middle Eastern countries are some of the largest producers of rose water because of the availability of damasks.

Provide your skin with a natural glow and freshness, instead of subjecting your skin to various kinds of beauty products. Try the magical powers of rose water. Surely you will find your skin more soft, radiant and healthy at the same time.

The biggest reason for the popularity of rose water is that rose water is suitable for all types of skin. It has tremendous hydrating effects and act as a natural moisturizer for dry skin and heals skin inflammation as well that may caused by sunburns. It can be used as a toner and maintains the oil balance of your skin. Rose water tightens your skin pores and brings down wrinkles and other signs of aging to a great extent. It works as an aftershave when the skin tends to become irritated after shaving and you will have a soothing effect on the skin.

The miraculous rose water with its antiseptic and antibacterial properties enables it to treat acne and other forms of skin diseases and prevent their reappearance. Rose water is widely used in cosmetics as an ingredient as it keeps the skin soft and beautiful. Also rose water is gaining popularity in aroma therapy as it provides a relaxing and calming effect.

Rose water is also used as an ingredient in food. In the Middle East and Asia, meat is cooked and infused with it. Rose water provides the primary flavor for many sweet treats and candies. There are hundreds of benefits of rose water, as you can drink it or use it in a special dish and once you get familiar with its taste, gourmets or gourmands can delight in numerous dishes which evoke traditional cuisine at least millennia old.

There are many people who do not know how to use this amazing natural product. Apply some rose water over your face and neck before putting on the makeup. This will help the makeup to last longer and will give a natural glow to the skin. It is good practice to use it for the removal of regular makeup. Simply dip a cotton ball in rose water and rub it gently all over your face in circular motions. People who have sensitive skin and cannot use regular perfume products can make their own natural perfume by mixing up of one cup of rose water and a few drops of jasmine essential oil. Store it up in a dark glass bottle with a tight lid and use it as it pleases you. So next time you go for shopping, buy yourself a bottle of pure rose water – and relish the miracle liquid. Thank you

Great Gifts to Make from Roses 

Learn how to make real rose water perfume, a tin of your own special rose sugar, or a basket of rose petal potpourri. Roses are beautiful to look at, have an intoxicating smell and are the grand beauties of any flower garden. Rose water has a time-honoured place in festivities around the world. Blessings are given at ceremonies and wedding feasts, by sprinkling on the faces or body of guests.  In the home a rose water sprinkler is a symbol of hospitality and affluence. A true blessings offered with the garden of paradise, for the Rose teaches us how to trust. It takes a pure heart to trust others, to count on them, when times are in need. We learn to give our hearts to the garden God has given to us.  We offer a blessing to the delicate Rose Water to be shared in our homes, our temples and our gardens. Here are a few wonderful gifts to make from rose petals. 

Drying Rose Flowers
1. Pick flower buds and heads fresh from your favorite garden or bouquet.  Three to five heads are sufficient for most beading projects.
2. Peel off the petal layers and place in a single layer on newspaper. 
3. Place in a dark area with good ventilation and low humidity for approximately two weeks. To speed up the process, use a food dehydrator.
4. When dry (crisp), package in a zip lock bag.

Rose Water
Rose water is a staple found in most European and Italian homes. Rose water adds a light, sweet aroma to breads, pastries, glazes and teas.

5 or 6 rose petals
1 gallon of mineral water
1 gallon glass container with a tight lid.
1 (aluminum) pot that will hold a gallon of water [I recommend stainless unless there is reason for aluminum-says Holiness David Running Eagle]

Add the rose petals to the water and boil for fifteen minutes. Remove petals from water after cool. Pour water into the glass container and use as needed.

Rose Glycerin Facial Cleaner (Anitseptic)

By Annie B. Bond
Rose water is one of the all-time best and most traditional facial 
cleansers, because rose is astringent, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and has a lovely scent.

1 cup rose-infused water
2 teaspoons glycerin 
5 to 10 drops rose essential oil

Place a handful of dried rose petals in a mason jar, cover with boiling water, seal, and let set overnight. Note that dried rose petals are available in many health food stores (as is vegetable glycerin), or online from herbal supply stores.

After the rose petal infusion has set overnight, strain. Combine the ingredients in a pretty jar, and shake to blend. Note that you will extend the shelf life if you add 1/2 a teaspoon of grapefruit seed extract (available in health food stores). The antiseptic quality of essential oils will also act as a preservative. Thank you

Rose Perfume
This is the same perfume that ladies of fashion wore centuries ago.

6 cups of rose petals, no stamens
6 cups of water
1 large aluminum pot
cheese cloth
perfume bottle with a tight fitting lid

Put all ingredients into the pot and bring to a boil. Then turn heat to simmer and cook for 2 hours. Strain the liquid through the cheesecloth several times until all pulp is removed. Let the perfume cool completely before pouring into a decorative perfume bottle.

white rose beads
Rose Beads (Rosary)

Rose Beads are believed to be used to make the original rosaries, hence the name rosary.

6 to 8 cups of rose petals
10 cups water
1 aluminum pot
1 tablespoon of glycerin

Combine all ingredients in the pot and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Turn down to low and slowly cook for 3 or 4 hours until most of the water has evaporated and the petals have formed a paste. Pour mixture into a colander to get rid of excess moisture. When the paste is cool enough to touch form small beads, and use woodentoothpicks to make the holes. Note: if the paste doesn’t stick together, add a teaspoon more of glycerin. Let the beads completely dry overnight then string into a rosary or necklace. When the beads come into contact with body heat they will emit the aroma of roses. (quick rose beads recipe at the bottom of the page)

Photo by Charles Brooks
Rose Beads (Rosary)

Rose beads were first made in ancient Rome. By the Middle Ages, the rose had become a symbol of faith for the early European Christians. Their first string of prayer-counting beads, the rosary, named for this symbol of their faith, was very likely made of roses as well. Recipes for creating rose-petal beads vary widely. Some require cooking, while others don't. Some recipes include flour. Some suggest cooking the rose petals in an iron skillet to make dark black beads. The only common ingredient: rose petals.

Materials and Tools:
rose petals — 4 cups or more
chopping knife
saucepan or skillet for simmering petals (cast iron for black beads)
rose oil
pins or needles to create holes
nylon beading thread

1. Chop the rose petals into small pieces. Put the pieces into a saucepan or skillet and cover them with water. Simmer for about an hour.
2. Add a bit of rose oil to the pot and simmer an hour a day for four or five days until the petal mixture begins to look like clay.
3. Squeeze as much moisture as possible out of the mixture and save the rose liquid in a small covered container.
4. Form small beads with the rose mixture. Keep in mind that the beads will shrink as they dry. Poke a hole in each bead and set them aside to dry.
5. Check the beads each day. When they are fully dry, rub some of the reserved rose liquid onto each bead. Do this for several days to harden the bead surface.
6. String the beads on beading thread and enjoy. 
Thank you 

Rose Potpourri
4 or 5 cups of dried rose heads
A favorite container/s
Pour the rose heads into a basket or decorative jar. Add scented oil for a stronger smell.

Decorative Rose Topiary

1 3-inch clay pot
1 Styrofoam ball, about the size of a tennis ball
1 8-inch long ½ inch dowel rod, painted brown or green
Spanish moss
Florist foam
Hot glue gun
Approximately 40 tea rose heads

Fill the clay pot with florist foam. Glue the top of the foam with Spanish moss to cover. Center the dowel in the center of the pot and place in the florist foam. Use glue to cover the Styrofoam ball with Spanish moss. Glue the entire ball with the rose heads, and fasten to the top of the dowel rod. Tie a ribbon around the pot.

Rose Sugar

1 c. granulated sugar
1 rose head, any variety
1 decorative jar that will hold 1 cup of sugar/ with tight fitting lid

Carefully remove all petals from the rose and place them attractively in the bottom of the decorative jar. Fill the rest of the jar with the sugar. Shake the jar a couple of times. After a week or so the sugar will have absorbed the essence of the rose.

Rose sugar is sweeter than regular sugar and deliciously fragrant. Wrap a nice ribbon around the jar, and add it to a basket for a friend who enjoys tea. Adding a few packages of specialty teas to the basket and a mug make a beautiful personal gift for a friend.

Candied Rose Petals

10 rose petals
1 pasteurised egg white
50 g sugar

Recipe provided by Flagrante DelĂ­cia   Thank you

 Homemade Distilled Rose Water 

This time of year every time I walk out the front door I get the heady waft of of roses at the peak of bloom and sometimes I shut my eyes and breathe deeply lingering for a few moments to imprint the scent on my memory.

I decided to try capturing the delicate scent by attempting some homemade rose water! From what I know of the process I thought a home set up might be do-able and got to work searching the interweb for some methods! I found some things, made a slight modification and went to work with rudimentary household utensils (thought I was, in my mind, acquiring glass do-dads and pipe, rubber stopper and connector thingys and burners like a mad scientist to make something a little more sophisticated - next project!).

TIP: You can use your rose water by itself as a refreshing toner or add 10% witch hazel to make an astringent! 

Stuff you will need
• about 8 oz of fresh rose petals - preferably that are chemical free and picked in the morning.
If you don't have roses as a neighbor or see if a local florist will give/sell you old roses (that thye will probably throw out anyway)

NOTE: I made 2 oz of rose water with 8 oz of fresh petals
• double boiler with a steamer
• ramekin or small heat safe dish
• tin foil ( a stainless steel bowl will work better)
• ice
• tap water or distilled water 

What to do:

This process will take 3-4 hours depending on how many rose petals you pick.
1) clean the picked petals - mine were covered in insects and spiders so I just filled the pot holding my petals to the top with water to flush critters out.
2) set up your pot. Fill the bottom with water so the steamer pan is about 1 inch above the level of the water. Place the ramekin in the center.
3) Put petals around the ramekin, you can really stuff them in just make sure they sit at or below the level of your ramekin. 

4) place a sheet of foil over the top so that it is in a concave shape - you can also use a stainless steel bowl.

5) set water to boil and then simmer - put a few ice cubes on the top of your foil - you will have to keep refilling ice and emptying water so a bowl would indeed be better for this! Just make sure the lowest point of the bowl sits above the ramekin and that it completely seals the top of the pot so that rose water does not escape!

6) You will have to refill rose petals every half hour or so - do not remove old ones. You will already see the rose water in the ramekin after just 30 minutes!You may also have to add more water to the double boiler, but just add a few ounces at a time so it does not breach the bottom of the steam pan. After you have added your last batch of rose petals let the whole thing steam for another hour and then you are done! Discard rose petals into the compost heap or back into your garden soil. 

Place the rose water in a sterile glass jar and keep in the refrigerator - lasts about a week. 

Has anyone tried making floral water with other types of flowers? If so what did you make and what was your method! 

Thank you

Quick Rose Petal Beads 


This is the simplest method I have ever come across for making lovely, fragrant beads from rose petals. Thanks to my friend Joanne who told me her husband makes necklaces like this.  Words are hardly necessary

Do thank the rosebushes for the harvest.
Squeeze in hand(s)...over and over.....over and over.... rose juice will come out....
IMG_5787This is partway through the process.  Eventually it gets so that the petals hold together and you can shape them into beads with a gentle circular motion of one palm over the other.  I put them in the sun for a few hours so they could dry a bit before I put the needle with yarn through to make a hole and keep it open during the entire drying time. 

These are my very first two rose petal beads - the one on the left being more of a cone.. Presented fondly and with great contentment.  I am about to go and make some more.....
Thank you

Blessing with Rose Water

Water that is blessed, helps us get home to our heavenly beginnings. We are the blue of all the waters of the world, tears that flowed, from ancestors and relatives for our continual life we live and journey upon.  Each day we give thanks for the wonders of a garden, in a world, that seeks paradise.

When one blesses water, a crystalline structure is formed. This rock of perfection is the sacred blessings. We recognize these shapes with the snowflake, each perfect and unique, but all have six sides of God's house, the sacred blessing. However, is we offer our Rose Water this same blessing, we combine the essence of the Rose, to the water of eternal life. The Rose flower represents the unshakable faith and trust in others. This is the power of true love.  Below they state that the word "Rose" came from the Germanic word "hrod" or horse. It is a horse that represents our soul. Here our spirits arise into the world of moving streams of heaven, where our soul takes flight. We offer respect and wisdom, when we offer the sacred blessings with Rose Water. We honor our waters of the world, all the tears we have shed and for the joy of tomorrow into a heavenly path upon our Earthly realm of Earth.  We sprinkle Rose water the same way we offer smudging or a fire blessing with smoke, however water is literally gifted to the body, to know the eternal road to paradise, the blue road, where our souls soar. Our Rose represents the "Spirit of the Soul". by White Buffalo Calf Woman

Water Blessing Sprinklers
Rose Flower Symbolism
The flower symbolism associated with roses is love, remembrance, passion (red); purity (white); happiness (pink); infidelity (yellow); unconscious beauty, I love you. Roses were first cultivated 5,000 years ago in Asian gardens. Confucius wrote that the emperor of China owned over 600 books on the cultivation of roses. Roses were introduced to Europe during the Roman Empire and were thereafter used for ornamental purposes. Roses are emblems of England and New York City. This name was in use throughout the Middle Ages (long before herb and flower names became popular) and probably originated as a short form of longer Germanic names containing the word hrod, meaning "horse."

More than any other flower, the rose has been prized for its beauty the world over. Symbolic associations with the rose have existed since the days of the ancient Romans and Greeks. Roses have been identified with love and passion since those times, beginning with their association with the goddesses Aphrodite, Isis and Venus. Cleopatra is said to have received Marc Anthony in a room literally knee-deep in roses.

The flower symbolism associated with roses is love, remembrance, passion (red); purity (white); happiness (pink); infidelity (yellow); unconscious beauty, and I love you. Wild roses have five petals. This has led to their symbolic connection to the wounds of Christ in Christian iconography. The rose also symbolizes the Virgin Mary herself, who was known as the "Mystic Rose." 

This is a wonderful page on Rose Flower meaning for the many colored roses. Pink roses convey gentle emotions of admiration, joy and gratitude, as we have used on this page for you, our Relatives of Earth.

Rainbow Warriors of Prophecy
Teach what is right, that law is the LOVE, then when two hearts is united, we share with intelligence. However if LOVE doesn't lead the way, then we fight to unite LOVE, two broken hearts, then we know that we are walking the truth path, the love to each other, the kind that lasts, over rolling hills in time, over the suns, and into the heart of the blue seas of every one. We are the Prophecy, the Rain upon the Land, so parched, it will need a Rainbow, to serve it home the right way and know where to land (the Rainbow always lands on the pot of gold, abundance, brotherhood)! 

Visit Alightfromwithin.Org

Monday, November 8, 2010

Chick Peas or Garbanzo Bean Recipes: Falafel or Hummus?

Fresh Chick Peas
Bean dishes around the world, shown here, fresh "Chick Peas" or the "Garbanzo Bean", supply us with protein structures, our bodies need to sustain human life.  When and where meat is omitted from the diet, beans can offer a balance of carbohydrates and complete proteins, when mixed with whole grains. Around the world, cultures have passed down traditions that gift us pleasure and long life.  

We hope you enjoy, Rainbow Warrior's Favorite Recipes. Long live Daughters of Israel. Gathering commanders of kitchens around the world.  White Buffalo Calf Woman your Twin Deer Mother and Rainbow Warriors of Prophecy 

Written by Sara Hohn: Another one from the list of foods-I-didn’t-know-what-they-looked-like-fresh — These green, slightly furry pods each contain between one and three garbanzo beans (aka chick peas), a staple of Middle Eastern and Indian cuisines for thousands of years. Growing on a bushy plant, chick peas are ready to eat straight from the swollen pod – no soaking or cooking required. Younger, smaller peas taste sweet and approximate a regular green pea. The mature, plumped chick peas are a creamy yellow color resembling a tiny 1/2-inch brain, losing some of their sweetness to a nuttier, more complex flavor. Like sitting down with a basket of shelled peanuts, there’s something quite enjoyable in cracking open each chick pea pod for a tasty, fresh surprise inside.

falafel, felafel, pita


About Israel's signature food--plus, a recipe.

By Joan Nathan

Every Israeli has an opinion about falafel, the ultimate Israeli food, which is most often served stuffed into pita bread. One of my favorite spots is a simple stand in the Bukharan Quarter of Jerusalem, adjacent to Mea Shearim. The neighborhood was established in 1891, when wealthy Jews from Bukhara engaged engineers and city planners to plan a quarter with straight, wide streets and lavish stone houses. Reprinted with permission from The Foods of Israel Today (Knopf).
After the Russian Revolution, with the passing of time and fortunes, the Bukharan Quarter lost much of its wealth, but even so the area retains a certain elegance. There, the falafel is freshly fried before your eyes and the balls are very large and light. Shlomo Zadok, the elderly falafel maker and falafel stand owner, brought the recipe with him from his native Yemen.
Zadok explained that at the time of the establishment of the state, falafel--the name of which probably comes from the word pilpel(pepper)--was made in two ways: either as it is in Egypt today, from crushed, soaked fava beans or fava beans combined with chickpeas, spices, and bulgur; or, as Yemenite Jews and the Arabs of Jerusalem did, from chickpeas alone.
But favism, an inherited enzymatic deficiency occurring among some Jews--mainly those of Kurdish and Iraqi ancestry, many of whom came to Israel during the mid 1900s--proved potentially lethal, so all falafel makers in Israel ultimately stopped using fava beans, and chickpea falafel became an Israeli dish.
The timing was right for falafel in those early years, with immigrants pouring in. Since there was a shortage of meat, falafel made a cheap, protein-rich meal ; and people liked it.
Rachama Ihshady, daughter of the founder of another favorite Jerusalem falafel joint, Shalom's Falafel on Bezalel Street, told me that her family recipe, also of Yemenite origin, has not changed since British times. Using the basics taught to me by these falafel mavens, I have created my own version, adding fresh parsley and cilantro, two ingredients I like and which originally characterized Arab falafel in Israel.
Give me mine wrapped in a nice warm pita bread, swathed in tahina sauce and overflowing with pickled turnip and eggplant, chopped pep pers, tomatoes, cucumbers, amba (pickled mango sauce)--and make itharif, Hebrew for "hot." The type of hot sauce used, of course, depends on the origin of the falafel maker.

A Falafel Recipe

1 cup dried chickpeas         
1 teaspoon cumin
Half a large onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup) 
1 teaspoon baking powder
4-6 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
Soybean or vegetable oil for frying
Chopped tomato for garnish
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro 
Diced onion for garnish
1 teaspoon salt 
Diced green bell pepper for garnish, diced cucumbers, mint leaves or diced fresh tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried hot red pepper 
Tahina sauce
4 cloves garlic  
Pita bread (any flat bread or whatever other bread you may have in the house will do also)
1. Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover them by at least 2 inches. Let soak overnight, then drain. Or use canned chickpeas, drained.
2. Place the drained, uncooked chickpeas and the onions in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, hot pepper, garlic, and cumin. Process until blended but not pureed.
3. Sprinkle in the baking powder and 4 tablespoons of the flour, and pulse. You want to add enough bulgur or flour so that the dough forms a small ball and no longer sticks to your hands. Turn into a bowl and refrigerate, covered, for several hours.
4. Form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of walnuts, or use a falafel scoop, available in Middle Eastern markets.
5. Heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a deep pot or wok and fry 1 ball to test. If it falls apart, add a little flour. Then fry about 6 balls at once for a few min utes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Stuff half a pita with falafel balls, chopped tomatoes, onion, green pepper, and pickled turnips. Drizzle with tahina thinned with water.
Note:  Egyptians omit the cilantro and substitute fava beans for the chickpeas.


Israeli Hummus Recipe

You've seen it in the stores. Now you can make it at home. By Joan Nathan

I have been making hummus for years and have concluded that despite the temptation to use canned chickpeas, the flavor is much better when it is made with dried chickpeas found at Middle Eastern or Indian food stores. First I soak a large quantity overnight, cook some, and then drain and freeze the rest in two-cup batches in plastic bags.Reprinted with permission from The Foods of Israel Today (Knopf).
Whenever I need them for hummus, falafel, or for the many chickpea soups and stews in this book, I just take them out of the freezer. When substituting canned beans, figure that one cup of raw chickpeas equals two cups of cooked or canned. Some old-time cooks in the Middle East either peel cooked chickpeas or pass them through a food mill before using them. I find there is no need for this laborious extra step. I add to my hummus a little bit of cumin, which blends beautifully with the garlic and lemony flavor.

A Hummus Recipe

YIELD: About four cups, or six-to-eight servings
1 cup dried chickpeas (1 can 16oz, small batch)
1 cup tahina (2 tablespoon, small batch)
1/2 cup lemon juice, or to taste (less, small batch)

2 cloves garlic, or to taste (less, small batch)
1 teaspoon salt (to taste, small batch)
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, or to taste

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons pine nuts (small batch, optional)
Dash of paprika or sumac
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
1. Put the raw chickpeas in a bowl with cold water to cover and soak overnight.
2. Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then place them in a heavy pot with enough cold water to cover. Bring to a boil, then simmer, partially covered, for about an hour or until the chickpeas are soft and the skin begins to separate. Add more water as needed.
3. Drain the chickpeas, reserving about 1-1/2cups of the cooking liquid. Set aside 1/4cup of the cooked chickpeas for garnish. In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, process the remaining chickpeas with the tahina, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, and at least 1/2 cup of the reserved cooking liquid. If the hummus is too thick, add more reserved cooking liquid or water until you have a paste-like consistency.
4. Heat a frying pan and add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Spread the pine nuts in the pan and stir-fry, browning on all sides.
5. To serve, transfer the hummus to a large, flat plate, and with the back of a spoon make a slight depression in the center. Drizzle the remaining olive oil on top and sprinkle the reserved chickpeas, pine nuts, paprika or sumac, and parsley or cilantro over the surface.
6. Serve with cut-up raw vegetables and warm pita cut into wedges
Note: You can also add cayenne pepper to the hummus. Sometimes leftover hummus tends to thicken just add some water to make it the right consistency.

Joan Nathan
Joan Nathan lived in Israel for three yeas where she worked for Mayor Teddy Kollek of Jerusalem. She is the author of several cookbooks, contributes articles on international ethnic food and special holiday features to The New York Times, Food Arts, Gourmet, and the B'nai B'rith International Jewish Monthly. Thank you Joan Nathan for your contribution to Falafel and Hummus. And Thank you

Rainbow Warriors of Prophecy
Image: Dried Chick Peas

Blessings come from a pod, bringing richness to our yards, gardens of paradise, that's what we see, the heart of abundance in you and me.  There is a seed, that knows to grow, into lush gardens overgrow, our heart believe in places of dreams, where all does flower and produce live, a green (grass home).