During the Ottoman Period, it was unthinkable for a house wife to purchase jam for the house from the market; to do so would be a cause of embarrassment for her. As the lady of the house an Ottoman woman had to make it herself. Traditionally jam was served at circumcision festivals and marriage ceremonies. At the palace, after a royal banquet, jam was always served to the guests. The most striking aspect of this service was the brilliantly coloured , elegant jam cups that were imported from Europe.
Of the 57 desserts made for the circumcision ceremony of Suleyman the Magnificient?s sons Beyazıt and Cihangir, and the desserts made for the wedding feast of his daughter Mihrimah Sultan, 22 were different varieties of jams.
Rose jam was considered to be a 'sine-qua-non' for the royal kitchens, and was called the ? Queen of Jams?. Jam being one of the major items of expenditure in the royal kitchen budget, rose jam may have been even more costly due to the fact that the rose petals used in making the jam were collected from the sweet-scented roses grown in the 21 imperial gardens and especially from the gardens of Edirne Palace .
The aromatic roses that I used in making my rose jam came from Elbistan. , they are sweet-scented pink roses. I made sherbet from some and jam from most of them. Both were delicious and exquisite.
For me all jams are tasty but rose jam is delightful with its superb aroma.:
- 200 gr. pink rose petals
- 900 gr. granulated sugar
- 1 lt water
- 1 tablespoon lemon salt
- 2 whole cloves
Wash and drain the petals. Place the cleaned and drained petals in a pyrex or teflon pot. Add sugar , cloves and lime salt . Cover and let it stand over night.
The next day, stir the rose and sugar mixture , add 1lt. water and place it over medium heat, bring to boil. Keep it boiling for 15 mins. then turn off the heat , with a ladle transfer the rose petals to another receptacle . Turn the heat on, boil the jam until it thickens. Once it thickens, add the petals, and stir a few minutes. Take the jam out in the sun. Let it remain there 2-3 days then pour it into jars.