Lemon and Rose Cake

July 22, 2010 § 6 Comments

When I was about nine-years old my parents took me on this wonderful trip to Europe. We spent christmas in a castle that has been converted into a hotel, which I am sure there are a lot of in Europe but it was pretty magical for a nine-year old. That year for christmas I got given my first camera, and a bottle of rose perfume. The bottle of perfume had a slow leak and the smell of rose permeated everything in my suitcase for the rest of the trip. Even now when I smell rose I am taken back to this holiday. Most of the recollections are of food. Having bocconcini for the first time in a packed lunch, while walking the ruins of Pompeii after my mum had been out shopping and seen people making this strange fresh cheese in a deli. Minestrone soup in Rome after the waiter dropped the first attempt at delivering our meals all over us. Garlic snails in a Greek restaurant Paris while we shared a table with friendly group of people, and at the other end of the table and a little band played. The first time I had polenta was in Venice, and I loved to order oxtail soup and stuffed potatoes in the pubs in country England. The whole time everything smelled of rose. Last stop was America, I rember it beeing so bitterly cold in Washington and the perfect antidote was a huge urn of hot mulled apple cider in the hotel lobby. In America I must of bought some lollies and chocolates becasuse I rember when I got home eating these sweets that were all infused with my rose perfume. The best rose combernation was with the lemon jubes.

A couple of months ago I bought some dried rose buds from the Essential Ingredient, I wanted to make something for a Wednesday night at III Bean inspired by the rose and lemon combination. I didn’t make a tart which was my initial thought. After several failed attempts I decided to make a vanilla mousse cake with a lemon centre and a rose jelly top, I soaked the almond sponge at the base of the cake in a lemon rose sugar syrup. It is a pretty cake and quite different from anything I have made before, but I am very happy with the outcome. Mum and dad; thanks for the holiday all those years ago, and if you are reading this and you feel like revisiting my memory of this holiday I have some spare cakes in the fridge at home.


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§ 6 Responses to Lemon and Rose Cake

  • Wow – I thought the cake looked beautiful enough, but combined with that magical story… Lovely! What is it about rose perfume and leaks? I have a bottle of Stella that’s been leaking into its box ever since I bought it. When I finally use the last drops that amethyst silk lining infused with rose perfume is going straight into my dressing table. Mmmmm.

    • alicelees says:

      You could always wrap a box of chocolates in the silk, unwrap them and you will have rose chocolates. Thanks for the lovely comments.

  • Big sis says:

    Thanks for the wander down memory lane. The cake looks almost too pretty to eat. …..almost.

  • Christy says:

    How delicate and gorgeous!! I can imagine the taste from here…the sumptuous velvety texture, the refreshing tang and just a hint of rose at the beginning and towards the end. Beautiful story to accompany it too!!

  • Kerry McDonald says:

    Hi Alice

    The fragrant image you have created in my mind is gorgeous. So many dishes have beautiful memories embedded within.
    Every time I eat this cake now (I will try to make it, and I know my friend Madeleine will try it too because she is a born Parisian – ‘native’ somehow doesn’t seem the right word – and she loves cooking) I will think of your story and the castle, and the little girl who grew up to be a creative genius of the taste buds.
    Kerry xxxxxxO

  • What am amazing memory you have triggered by the smell of rose. I want to take my daughters on such a holiday so when they grow up they will be as inspired as you. The cakes are so delicate and pretty looking, I so wish I could taste them.

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