Rose is the eternal symbol of love, and nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar encapsulates this feeling while sharing her mother’s recipe of gulkand, a sweet preserve made of petals from the flower.
Gulkand is often used in Ayurveda to help with bodily imbalances and is traditionally prepared using Damask roses. Other roses used include the China, French and Cabbage roses.
Gulkand is a powerful antioxidant that can treat ulcers and acidity. It is said to rejuvenate the stomach and make digestion easy.
It mainly works as a cooling tonic in Ayurvedic, Unani and Persian medicines. Diwekar says gulkand can help with issues such as headache, lethargy, tiredness, constipation and bloating, sugar cravings, PCOS, irregular sleep and more.
- Take only the petals and put them in a clean glass bottle.
- For one bowl of petals, add an equal amount of sugar.
- Place the lid tight and keep the bottle in the sun.
- Keep adding petals and sugar layers to the bottle till it fills.
- Keep it in the sun for at least 10 days after adding the last layer.
As simple as that. And what’s more, you can incorporate this gulkand in a number of dishes — cheesecakes, kheers, halwas, barfis, cupcakes and more. Here’s a recipe by Indian food blogger Madhu of delicious paan ladoos with gulkand.
Paan Ladoo with Gulkand
- Betel leaves
- Cashew, almonds, pistachio
- Sunflower seeds
- Shredded dry coconut
- Chopped dates
- Microwave chopped pan leaves for a minute. Give it a mix and microwave for another 45 seconds until it’s dry.
- Pan-fry the nuts and sunflower seeds without oil for 2-3 minutes.
- Add desiccated coconut to the mix and fry for another one minute.
- Make the dry pan leaves into a coarse powder followed by fried nuts and coconut.
- When the mixture turns crumbly, not powdered, add chopped dates and blend again.
- Move the mix to a plate and add gulkand.
- Turn the mixture into ladoo form and serve.
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