Crystallized flowers—help!!!
Posted: 06 May 2008 12:12 AM   [ Ignore ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  4
Joined  2008-05-06

Hi there—
I made two batches of crystallized flowers with egg white and superfine sugar, following Rose’s instructions in the Cake Bible.  I let them set overnight, and put them in a plastic storage box.  They never really did “dry.”  Now, they’re a mess!!  The egg white turned into glue mixed with sugar and ruined the shape of the buds.  On the second batch, I set the buds on waxed paper in the box and under the paper I put a half-inch of silica gel powder. 

Any help on this problem?! 

Your friend in the kitchen and the sewing room—

Michele and my Joyfulneedle

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2008 02:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2570
Joined  2007-11-15

Oh no… I’m so sorry to hear you had problems.  I’ve done this a few times with fruit as well as flowers.  For flowers, the technique works well on individual petals, or flowers that have opened petals (like pansies). 

I think there were two things that contributed to your “mess”.  1) you used flower “buds”, which contain a great deal of moisture than flat petals, and 2) you stored the buds in a plastic container, which means the buds continued to “breath” their moisture into the plastic box (and we all know what happens when sugar is exposed to moisture), but your idea to use the silica gel seems to have helped in that situation. 

You didn’t mention how far in advance you made these?  I like to dry everything on a wire rack with a very gentle fan in the room (not directly on the petals of course)... they dry in several hours.  I don’t try to store them, and I only make what I plan to use within 24 hours (apples can last a bit longer).

I hope that helps.

 Signature 

Come visit me at

My blog:  http://butteryum.org

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2008 05:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  4
Joined  2008-05-06

Thanks for your reply!

I was making these flowers for no particular reason—to have on hand because the directions say that they will keep for weeks.  Perhaps the plastic did contribute to the problem.  I picked fresh rose buds the size of your little fingernail—very tiny ones out of my yard.  I used pansies as well—they didn’t look good at all!  They just turned into shapeless flat things coated with the sugar.  The roses were gorgeous with the fine sugar on them, I was thrilled….until they gooed out into a mess!  I’m not sure if I’m going to try them again.  Rose (in CB) said tiny rose buds were among her favorite flowers for this technique.  I guess if I could have put them right on a cake they would have worked.  It’s very discouraging results.  I’m not going to even look at the ones in the silica gel box until tomorrow!  I’ll let you know how that goes!!

Michele

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2008 06:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  324
Joined  2008-03-19

Did they look okay the following morning before you put them into the plastic box? If so, my advice to you is to let them dry a lot longer, maybe even 2 days. I recently did tiny rose buds from my garden, and I let them dry for 2 or 3 days, even though the air is usually pretty dry here in Los Angeles.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2008 06:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  4
Joined  2008-05-06

Yes!  They looked great!  I guess I’m going to have to find a way to dry them more thoroughly if I want to do it.  My tiny roses are only in bloom for a few more days.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 May 2008 05:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  86
Joined  2008-04-23

By the way, the drying time can vary widely depending on climate and what you’re crystalizing. In a humid climate, even tiny flowers like individual lilac flowers took days to dry fully, sugar and flower. In the dry climate I’m in now, an hour or two has violets pretty crispy, but furry mint leaves take much longer. I do usually leave any flower or leaf out for several days anyway out of paranoia and inertia. Also, if you have powedered egg whites around, they work really well. Diluted according to the directions on the can, the result holds sugar well, and is still a watery liquid, with no tendency to form globs on the flowers.

Cathy

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 May 2008 08:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2570
Joined  2007-11-15

Yes, I like to use egg white or meringue powder mixed with a bit of water, especially to sugar fruit (because it is pasteurized).

 Signature 

Come visit me at

My blog:  http://butteryum.org

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 July 2008 10:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  535
Joined  2008-05-03

I’m hoping to crystallize rose petals for a wedding on the 19th July.  It’s quite humid here in Scotland in July so would like advice on how many days before the event I should start.  I’ve only ever done mint leaves before and then half dipped them in chocolate so I’m quite nervous about it!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 09 July 2008 11:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2570
Joined  2007-11-15

Hi Annie - why don’t you do a test run with one rose now - that should answer all your questions.

 Signature 

Come visit me at

My blog:  http://butteryum.org

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
   
  Back to top