"The combination of rose and strawberries is one of those revelatory moments in the kitchen when you feel you've come across something truly special," says Alvarez. "Combine that with nutty, crisp buckwheat crêpes and you have a winner that will both satisfy and surprise. The apples are there to add a pink colour, pectin from the skins and seeds and a slight tartness." Start this recipe a day ahead to make the jam.
- 250 gm strawberries, hulled and cut into thin wedges
- 125 ml (½ cup) pouring cream
- 125 gm (½ cup) crème fraîche
- 50 gm caster sugar
- 200 gm organic rose petals (see note)
- 200 gm caster sugar
- 2 pink lady apples, diced and wrapped in muslin and tied to secure
- 1 tsp rosewater
- 60 gm butter, coarsely chopped, plus extra, softened, for cooking and spreading
- ½ tsp caster sugar, plus extra for scattering
- 240 ml milk
- 50 gm buckwheat flour
- 75 gm (½ cup) plain flour
- 120 ml flat beer
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 1For rose petal jam, toss petals and sugar in a bowl to combine, cover and refrigerate overnight to macerate. Place petals in a saucepan with 750ml water and wrapped apple, cover directly with a round of baking paper, bring to the simmer over medium heat, then simmer gently until syrup thickens and develops a deep pink colour (15-20 minutes). Remove from heat, discard apple and stir in rosewater. Refrigerate in a sterilised 500gm jar until required. Jam will keep refrigerated for up to 3 weeks.
- 2For buckwheat crêpes, stir butter, sugar, half the milk and ½ tsp salt in a saucepan over low heat to melt butter, then set aside to cool. Combine flours in a bowl, make a well in the centre, then add beer, eggs and oil, and whisk to combine. Whisk in cooled milk mixture, then whisk in enough remaining milk to reach the consistency of thick cream (you may not need all the milk). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours to rest.
- 3Preheat oven to 200C and line a tray with baking paper. Heat a crêpe pan over medium-high heat, melt 1 tsp butter in pan, then wipe out excess with paper towels. Add about ¼ cup batter, swirl pan to spread evenly and cook until browned on the base, and bubbles appear on the surface (45 seconds to 1 minute), then flip over to brown other side. Transfer crêpe to a plate and repeat with remaining batter, stacking crêpes as you go. Don’t worry if the first one or two crêpes stick; it usually takes a few tries to figure out your heat, and to season the pan. Spread each crêpe with a little butter, scatter with a little sugar and fold into quarters. Place on prepared tray and heat in the oven until edges crisp (4-5 minutes).
- 4Meanwhile, stir strawberries and a little rose petal jam in a bowl. Whisk cream, crème fraîche and sugar in a separate bowl to soft peaks. Serve warm crêpes with strawberries and rose petal jam spooned over the top and a dollop of whipped cream.
Note Organic rose petals suitable are best sourced from local gardens. Most roses sold commercially are sprayed with insecticide.
Drink Suggestion: I’m recommending something a bit unusual. Anton van Klopper makes a pink fizzy wine made with pinot noir. The slightly aromatic and crisp Domaine Lucci “Salmon Brut” Sparkling Pinot Noir will be perfect. Drink suggestion by Franck Moreau