Rose water Turkish delight

Recipes Jane Lyons. Photography Kate Battersby. Styling Sacha Wackrow.

This is a recipe that requires a bit of patience, time and care (a weekend project perhaps) but the reward – a soft, delicately chewy and fragrant sweet – is well worth it.

I found using a sugar thermometer was key to achieving a good consistency.

Makes approximately 34-36 squares

1 tsp neutral oil (I used rice bran oil)

2 tbsp grated fresh beetroot

2 tbsp rosewater

4 cups white sugar

1¼ tsp cream

of tartar

4½ cups water

1¼ cups cornflour, plus extra for dusting

Icing sugar for dusting

Use the oil to grease a slice tin (approx 32cm x 23cm). Place the beetroot and rose water in a small bowl and whisk to combine, then set aside for the beetroot to colour the rose water.

Place the sugar, cream of tartar and 2 cups of the water in a medium saucepan over a medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. If there are any sugar crystals on the side of the saucepan, wash them down with a pastry brush dipped in water to prevent crystallisation. Bring the mixture to the boil and keep it boiling until it reaches 115°C on a sugar thermometer.

Meanwhile, place the cornflour and the remaining water in a large saucepan and whisk to combine, ensuring there are no lumps. Place over a medium heat and bring to the boil, whisking constantly. The mixture should thicken.

Once the sugar mixture reaches 115°C, remove it from the heat and very carefully and slowly pour it into the cornflour mixture, whisking to incorporate. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 50 minutes to an hour, stirring every 6-8 minutes with a wooden spoon. The mixture will start to become very thick and rise and fall as it cooks. Once the mixture has started to develop a light golden colour, remove from the heat and stir in the strained rose water.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and allow it to set for 6-8 hours or overnight. Once completely set, carefully remove from the tin (it should come out easily if you tip it gently) and dust with a 50/50 mix of icing sugar and cornflour until lightly coated.

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