Grandmother's 80th birthday a few weeks back and, in a chocolate-cake-and-wine stupor, decided to deconstruct (read: break into bits) one of her bouquets of roses to make confetti.
There were various arguments about the best way to dry the petals (I wasn't the only one who'd overdone the sugar and alcohol), with the microwaved flowers the first to hit the bin. Most successful, or so we thought, was toasting them in the bottom of her Aga, which appeared the best solution, until they all crumbled into red powder a few days later.
Super-Organised Mum called this weekend with a solution: freeze them.
Chilling rather than heating the petals seems to keep them in pristine condition and preserves the deep rich hues of their original colour. As a bonus, when they thaw, they are still velvety soft.
If you want to give it a go, and with all those Valentine's Day bouquets hanging around this week, now's the time, here's Mum's instructions:
"Gently pull of the petals or snap off the heads when just beginning to droop, pop them gently onto a tray (petals can bruise if handled roughly), and then put into the freezer.
"On the following day bag them up and label them.
"If you want to take them out to look at after a few days do, let them defrost even, prove to yourself that they still look good, and then refreeze. Amazing, voila!
"Here's hoping that everyone gets given lots of roses before the big day.
"And, as there are so many weddings coming up why not keep some in the freezer anyway!"
(Please note, life expectancy for petals in the freezer has yet to be tested by Super-Organised Mother.)