Creating warmth and balance, that's what this toddy is all about. A facial steam, a soothing beverage that tastes floral, herbal, honeyed -- perfect for the changing light. For our first recipe on this new site, we wanted to offer you something reviving, a small resurrection in a cup. It's an example of the sort of healthy and seasonal cocktail we'll share each month in our column for Organic Life Magazine.
We like to make this as a "shim" -- a low-proof relaxer, with just a splash of gin. You get plenty of rose flavor that way, along with the aroma of fresh herbs and juniper. Too much gin, and you lose the flower power. With its deeply aromatic character, St. George Botanivore Gin is our spirit of choice here. We've tried all three of the company's gins, and they're stunning. This one is fresh. Think: meadow light. Imagine: layers of bay laurel, bergamot, and juniper. Plus cardamom and citrus. If you don't have a bottle of Botanivore in your cupboard, don't fret. Experiment.
Rose petals are one of our favorite ingredients. They're popping with vitamin C and full of antioxidants. Look for organic dried rose petals (our source is Mountain Rose), and try dropping in a complementary accent, like cardamom. It adds a twinge of exotic sweetness. You could also enliven this cup with chamomile blossoms, a few fresh rosemary needles, or some crushed pink peppercorns.
A toddy is any combination of hot water, spirits, spice, and sweetness. This recipe is one of our favorite versions. What's yours?
Gin and Rose Toddy
A traditional toddy is made with whiskey or rum, tea, lemon, honey, and spices (cinnamon and cloves). Because the flavors are so delicate here, we found that lemon was overwhelming. So was lime. Simplicity is best. Serve this toddy in the evening or afternoon with amaretti cookies or macarons. For more on brewing rose petals, check out The Kitchn.com.
- 2 teaspoons organic dried rose petals
- 8 ounces hot water, just off a boil
- 1 teaspoon raw honey (we used wildflower)
- 1/2 to 1 ounce gin (preferably Botanivore)
Steep the rose petals in hot water for 3 to 4 minutes, then strain into a warm cup. Stir in honey and gin. Note: you can use a tea bag or strainer, but we love to to let herbs flow loosely. Then we strain.