Rosewater is a love-it-or-hate-it ingredient. You either appreciate the delicate floral notes or it makes you feel like you've been punched in the face with your grandmother's perfume. It's a fine line. A subtle amount of rosewater can transform baked goods, jam, ice cream and, of course, cocktails.
The first time I fell in love with rosewater was at Balaboosta in New York City. I ordered the knafeh for dessert — a Middle Eastern cheesecake made with thin shreds of phyllo dough. It was served with this delicate rosewater ice cream and topped with pistachios. I promptly ordered a bottle of rosewater and began plotting ways to use it.
The tart, citrusy grapefruit juice balances out the rosewater in a beautiful way in this cocktail. A little goes a long way here, so if you're new to the rosewater game, maybe start with a 1/4 teaspoon. If you are not a grapefruit fan, try subbing lemon juice or orange juice.
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