Raspberry and Rose Jelly and Cream

Raspberry and Rose Jelly
My Raspberry and Rose Jelly and Cream always brings back memories. These crystal dishes are part of my earliest experience of being in the kitchen with my late Mom. Mom was a great believer in not letting special things “gather dust in the cupboard”, of using them as regularly as possible and enjoying them. So when we made jello, we used her cut glass crystal sherbet dishes. In retrospect I think my Mom was a brave woman, as if memory serves me correctly we started to make jello together when I was about three or four. And I was not the most co-ordinated of children.

I was fascinated by the x and circle shapes cut into the glasses. My Mom explained that they were called ‘cross and olive’ crystal and that they were very old. They had belonged to my Mom’s own mother who had died before I was born and who, my Mom explained, she missed very much. These days, I understand exactly how she felt.

I remember the glasses lined up on the counter, as I stood stirring the jello and hot water with a wooden spoon, I’d be holding firmly on to the handle of the pyrex jug we always made jello in just like Mom told me, “so you won’t burn yourself, April”. Mom always used ice cubes to make the jello set faster, and I used to love to watch them melt into the hot, thickening liquid as I continued to stir. Then would come the time to – very carefully – poor the now cool jello into the crystal dishes, before covering them with plastic wrap. Then I’d carry them to the fridge, one at a time, holding each glass “with both hands”. I never, ever broke one.

Strangely enough though, now my Mom’s cross and olive glasses are here in my house, they’ve stayed firmly shut in my china cabinet – in view, but rarely used. My heart broke when I lost both parents within weeks of each other five years ago, and I’ve kept many of the things they left me safely shut away in case they got broken too. Recently though, I’ve found that the sadness of losing my parents can often be somewhat displaced by remembering the happy times we had together, and it occurred to me that Mom wouldn’t want to see her things shut away. She’d want me to use them. So the other day, I made Raspberry and Rose Jelly and I used her cross and olive dishes.

This Raspberry and Rose Jelly and Cream recipe is a little more cosmopolitan than the Jello I made as a child, but it’s every bit as easy. Light and refreshing, it’s the perfect summer dessert, tasting faintly of Turkish Delight and Arabian Nights. I call it jelly because that’s what it is called here in England. As a child I didn’t think of Jello as a brand, but I have to remember that it is! Jelly is often made from gelatine squares or tablets here, although you can buy powdered sachets. The most popular brand here is Hartley’s but I confess I keep my eyes open for Jello, and even bring it back with me from Canada and the US. I made this recipe using Sugar Free Raspberry Jello, but use whatever brand you prefer. Rosewater – or rose flower water – is widely available in supermarkets in the UK. In Canada and the US I have seen rosewater on sale in the speciality sections of some grocery stores and in gourmet shops.

Raspberry and Rose Jelly and Cream

Raspberry and Rose Jelly and Cream
Serves: Serves 4
  • 1 package raspberry jelly or Jello (to serve 4)
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries, washed and drained
  • ½ cup double, heavy or whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar (confectioner's sugar)
  • ½ teaspoon rosewater, divided
  • 1 tablespoon shelled pistachios, finely sliced or chopped
  • whole mint leaves, washed and dried
  1. Prepare the jelly or Jello according to package directions. Use very cold water or ice cubes for the cold water part of the instructions.
  2. Stir in one quarter teaspoon of rose water.
  3. Pour the jelly into pretty dishes. Carefully add a few raspberries to each dish, pushing them down into the liquid. Reserve the remaining raspberries for garnish.
  4. Cover the dishes and chill until set.
  5. Whisk the sugar and remaining quarter teaspoon of rose water into the cream.
  6. Whip the cream with an electric mixer or hand whisk until soft peaks form.
  7. Garnish the jellies with whipped cream and raspberries.
  8. Sprinkle the pistachios over top.
  9. Garnish with mint leaves.
You could substitute the raspberry Jello for strawberry flavour, and the raspberries with sliced strawberries.

Shared with Food on Fridays, Foodie Friday, What’d You Do This Weekend, Foodie Friday, Simple Supper Tuesday, Full Plate Thursday

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Article by April Harris

April has written 1168 great articles for us.
April is a food, lifestyle and travel writer who lives in Berkshire, England. She shares inspiration, tips and trends for anyone who loves food, cooking, entertaining, fashion, travel and the finer things in life at her blog, AprilJHarris.com.
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  1. I grew up looking at a very large built in cabinet filled with my mother’s silver and crystal. She only used these on special occasions. My mom gave me some of trove when she moved and I use her fancy crystal and silver serving sets all the time. Life is too short not to enjoy your finery, so I’m with your mom, but I understand the emotional need to keep anything connected with your parents safe. My dad died a long time ago, five years is not that long yet.
    Well, I love this Jello and I will make it in some fine crystal champagne glasses in honor of your mom. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe and your memories with us on foodie friday. I still often think of your teacup post.

    • Thank you so much for the lovely comment, Diane. It’s so thoughtful of you. I hope you enjoy the recipe. It would look beautiful in your crystal champagne glasses!

  2. Delicious dessert very elegant April.

  3. Those are such lovely dishes! I’ve never used rose water before, but I’m sure it added a slightly beautiful flavour to the whipped cream. Thanks for sharing at Simple Supper Tuesday.

  4. Just want you to know that your recipe is being featured on foodie friday today. I will be pinning and tweeting it too this week. Thanks again for being part of our party.

  5. I think your Mother would be so proud to see your creations in her glasses! I’m a great believer in using things and not hiding them behind closed doors!

    I’m trying to persuade my Mother to part with a few things she no longer uses but I think just looking at them brings back fond memories!

    The glasses are beautiful!

  6. This is such a beautiful story and your writing is absolutely amazing- you made me feel like I was in the kitchen with you and your mom. My mom has the same philosophy of not allowing the pretties to gather dust – and I’m so happy you made this beautiful dessert in these gorgeous custard cups. Beautiful
    Thank you so much for sharing – this one touched me!

  7. Oh April, I love the story behind this recipe and your beautiful crystal dishes. It inspires me to use more of my precious dishes. I have just a few things that belonged to my grandmother, but I don’t use them because I don’t want anything to happen to them. The dessert looks and sounds wonderful! I don’t know that I’ve ever tried rosewater in anything.

    So, Jello is called Jelly in England? Love learning things like this.:)

  8. Strangely enough your post reminds me of my own childhood. Both my grandma and mom made desserts like this in special glasses. But sadly They weren’t so able to risk their pretty dishes on a child. Your momma must have been something special. I’m glad for your special moments with her!
    Thanks so much for sharing this post with us at #PureBlogLove link Party! the party starts every Thursday Evening at 8 p.m. EST. I’m hosting over at http://www.homemadefoodjunkie.com. Can’t wait to see what you bring next week!

    • Thank you, Diane, she really was an amazing lady :-) Mom always told me it was better something broke or got lost than that sit un-used in the cupboard – even after a china dish my Grandma had hand painted broke when she was using it one day. (Mom was so sad!) My Dad managed to glue it together and although we can’t use it, I still have it :-) I always try to remember her advice and use family dishes etc :-)

  9. Hi April,
    What beautiful memories and a beautiful post, in addition to a very special dessert. Hope you are having a great day and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday this week.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  10. What a beautiful story! I will make this recipe with my kids. Thanks for sharing!

  11. What a beautiful story. I am touched! Will most definitely make this recipe with my kids and will let them know your story. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Never used rose water in Jello, April, though I adore it scent and taste. Very creative and love the elegant presentation. Pinning.

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