Here at Venus ET Fleur®, we believe that anything can be taken to the next level with the addition of a high-quality and long-lasting rose (or many roses). This includes everything from a date night with your significant other to even your favorite foods. And although it may seem impossible to make an already rich and gorgeous cake even better, we have found a gamechanger in the form of the rose cake.
Whether you are an avid baker or merely a casual one who busts out the oven mitts strictly for special occasions, you will thoroughly enjoy the process of making a rose cake. Even better are the reactions of your loved ones as they take a bite of your own creation that is absolutely incredible inside and out.
If you want to do something special in the kitchen and try something new, we are here to walk you through how to bake a rose cake that will wow anyone lucky enough to see or taste it.
What Is a Rose Cake?
A rose cake is a decadent and flavorful dessert decorated in stunning floral designs to perfectly match its namesake. It can also be infused with rose essence that is the result of rose water, a naturally fragrant liquid that you can make using your favorite flowers. Whether you make a rose cake with rose flavoring or not, the lovely rose icing designs and decorations will be enough to evoke the vibrancy and romance of real roses.
How to Make Rose Water
Rose water is a reliable and versatile liquid that has been used in medicine, beauty, food, and beverages for thousands of years. Its health benefits include soothing irritated skin and sore throats, aiding in the prevention and treatment of infections, relieving headaches, and improving mood.
If you do choose to have a rose water-infused cake, we recommend trying to make your own rose water. Luckily, this is a very easy process that only requires four or five organic roses, water, a bowl, a saucepan, and a few ice cubes.
You can begin by removing the blossoms from the stems and gently rinsing them to ensure their cleanliness and freshness. Then place a bowl in the middle of an empty pot or saucepan on a stove, and place your flowers in the pan, taking care to leave the bowl in the center empty, as this is where the rose water will ultimately collect. Add enough water to cover the petals and bring it to a simmer.
Place a lid on top of the saucepan upside down, and place your ice cubes on top, replacing them as they melt. This helps with catching water vapor and condensation as the liquid within evaporates.
After about half an hour, the rose water should be collected and condensed in your center bowl. Carefully remove it from the saucepan, remembering to account for the heat, before letting it sit or chill. Extra rose water not used in your recipe can be stored in the refrigerator for several months.
Rose Cake Ingredients
To create a rose-flavored cake base, you will need:
- 3 cups of all-purpose flour
- 3 cups of granulated sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 cup (or 2 sticks) of unsalted butter at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons of rose water
- 1 cup of pasteurized egg whites (equivalent to about 7 egg whites)
- 1 ½ cups of whole milk at room temperature
- ⅛ cup of vegetable oil
- Gel food coloring in whatever hues you would like (optional)
Note that if you do not wish to add that extra rose-infused essence to the cake, simply refrain from adding any rose water to your ingredient list or batter.
You will also require these additional ingredients to create a rose water buttercream frosting:
- 3 cups of unsalted butter at room temperature
- 11 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 2 teaspoons of rose water
- ⅓ cup of heavy cream
- 1 ½ tablespoon of vanilla extract
Again, if you do not want the cake or icing to have a rose flavor, skip any steps or ingredients asking you to add rose water. We assure you that the cake will look and taste delicious either way.
Rose Cake Baking Instructions
Rose Cake Layers
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line four 7-inch pans (or three 8-inch pans, depending on your preference for depth and number of layers) with parchment paper and grease with a non-stick cooking spray.
- Mix all of the dry ingredients together until fully combined.
- Add pieces of the room-temperature butter into the dry mix, blending it all together at a low speed until the pieces disappear and the mixture becomes crumbly.
- Pour in the egg whites and mix them lightly on a low setting. Then add in the whole milk in two parts, still on a low speed.
- Mix in wet ingredients rose water, vanilla extract, and vegetable oil until it is all fully incorporated in the batter.
- Make sure that all of the ingredients are scraped off the sides of the bowl and pushed down so you can beat them on a low-speed setting for about 10 to 15 seconds, taking care not to overmix
- Add a few drops of gel food coloring if you would like to give the batter a pop of color. You will mix this thoroughly with a rubber spatula until the color is evenly distributed throughout the entire batter.
- Separate the batter evenly between your cake pans, either eyeballing it or utilizing a measuring device to ensure that the mixture is divided equally.
- Bake between 30 to 40 minutes, or until you can stick a toothpick in the center and have it come out clean. Let the cakes cool for 10 minutes before using a spatula or knife to separate the cake edges from the pan.
- Chill the cake in the freezer for about 45 minutes before gently flipping them out of the pans.
- Use a knife to top the layers, so they are all flat, even, and prepped for frosting.
Rose Cake Icing
As you wait for the cake to bake and chill, you can maximize your time by getting started on creating your frosting.
- Using your stand mixer, beat the three cups of unsalted butter at medium speed with a paddle for about 30 seconds or until it is completely smooth. Then slowly mix in your powdered sugar in one cup increments, alternating each one with a bit of the heavy cream.
- When this is all fully mixed, you can add the rose water, vanilla extract, and salt before beating it all at a low setting until all of the ingredients have been thoroughly mixed in. Make sure that you are left with the consistency you want before moving on to putting it on your cake.
- If the frosting did not end up how you wanted it to, thicken it by mixing in about ¼ cup of powdered sugar at a time, or you can thin it out by adding about a teaspoon of heavy cream at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
Putting the Rose Cake Together
Once you have finished making the cakes and frosting, you can stack the cake layers on top of one another atop a greaseproof or slip-proof cake board. Just in case, dab some frosting onto the board before you add the cakes on top of it to create the most delicious adhesive you have ever had.
Once that first layer is secure, evenly spread the frosting between each layer of cake. Coat the cakes in a thin layer of frosting, making sure to smooth it all thoroughly before chilling in the fridge or freezer for between five to 10 minutes.
Finish it off by adding a thick coating of frosting over the thin one, covering all of the cakes completely before smoothing it all down. You can then decorate it however you wish.
Consider Additional Roses
While piping rosettes all over the completed rose cake can certainly do the trick of making it look like the blooming flower of its namesake, there are other ways to incorporate roses into the cake that you may find worth trying.
For an added floral accenting and authenticity that is an alternative (or supplement) to rose water, try decorating and cooking with rose petals. You can grind up dried or dehydrated rose petals to create a flavored sugar or a spice mix that can be either sweet or savory. You can also just take some of our gorgeous Venus ET Fleur roses and use them as decorations to go atop your icing and maximize your cake’s eye-catching beauty and unique elegance.
Rose cake is the perfect dessert to make mouths water and heads turn and can turn any regular day or gathering into a special occasion. We hope that you will follow this recipe and consider utilizing Venus ET Fleur roses to create a remarkable cake that will fill stomachs and hearts alike.