Cut flowers may be beautiful, but you can't eat them. Why not break from tradition and make your sweetheart(s) an edible bouquet of strawberry roses instead! They're easy to make and a sweet treat to eat. I guarantee you will get huge bonus points for putting in the extra handmade effort. Here's how to make a dozen, long stemmed, strawberry roses.
Step 1: Supplies
*I bought two containers so that I'd end up with at least 14-16 good looking, similar sized berries. I wanted to end up with 12 good ones and left myself some practice wiggle room.
Step 2: Collecting the Leaves
Go through the bunch of roses and pull off 12 nice looking leaves. You can then put the roses in water and either give them to your loved one along with the strawberry bouquet, or keep them for yourself!
Note: You can also make paper leaves or use leaves from silk roses if you'd prefer.
Step 3: Wash the Leaves
Put the rose leaves into a colander and give them a good rinse. Rub them with your fingers under water to remove any surface residue.*
Lay them out on a cloth or paper towel and lightly press them dry.
Set them aside.
*Commercial roses are sprayed with lots of chemicals so it's important to clean them thoroughly.
Step 4: Making the Stems
Take one of the bamboo skewers and start wrapping the floral tape around the non-pointy end. Keep wrapping until you're about half way up the skewer.
Pick one of the leaves and lay the stem flat against (parallel to) the skewer, with the end of the stem resting just above where you stopped wrapping the tape.
Then keep wrapping around both the skewer and the leaf stem.
When you get to the base of the leaf, carefully pull it back and work the tape around it and continue wrapping until you get about 1/2" from the tip of the skewer.
Tear the tape from the roll and tightly wrap the end of the tape back onto itself.
Repeat this process for the remaining 11 roses, making an effort to vary the heights of the leaves on the skewers to create a more natural look.
Step 5: The Transformation: Strawberries into Roses
Using your pairing knife, cut down about one inch from the base of the berry until you're almost through. Before you remove the knife, pull back that 'petal' so that it sticks out a bit.
Repeat this process all around the base.
Now, offset the next row of petals so that they are staggered from the lower row. (see pictures)
Keep doing this all the way up the strawberry.
Once that's done, cut off the top 1/4" or so of the strawberry to give it a more classic rose shape.
Set the knife down and use your fingers to *carefully* peel back the petals until you have the desired 'open' rose shape.
Repeat this process until you have 12 good looking strawberry roses.
Step 6: Putting Them Together
Now take one rose and one stem.
Insert the unwrapped, pointy end of the stem into the base of the strawberry rose. Push it in until the rose feels secure (not floppy) on it's new stem.
Repeat this for the remaining parts.
Step 7: Presentation
You can either choose to wrap the roses up bouquet style in wax or butcher paper the way a flower store would, or arrange them in a vase filled with white sugar, rice, or small white rocks. (I used sugar.)
Present them with a small bowl of whipped cream or dipping chocolate to make them extra delicious.
I hope you enjoy making these as much as your sweetheart enjoys eating them!