fig, rose, & almond granola parfaits

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

Figs are here!  We finally had our first figs of the year this weekend, and words cannot adequately express how excited I am.  I feel like my first fig sighting is always one of the best days of the summer, even if it means fall isn’t far away, but this year I’ve been even more eager than usual to catch a glimpse of those plump little soldiers standing in their neat, blue-purple rows under the awning at our favorite produce store. 

Way, way back in the vestiges of winter, I discovered this gem of a fast-food Greek chain on our office Seamless that served up Greek yogurt parfaits with the most beguiling, fragrant rose petal preserves on top.  The yogurt was so thick and full-fat that you could stick a spoon upright in it, and if left for a few hours the rose preserves soaked into the granola and made it pretty much the best thing for a late night in the office, or even breakfast the next day.   At the time I couldn’t stop thinking about making it at home, but I thought it would have been perfect topped off with tender, grassy-sweet fresh figs — which were about as remote a possibility as they could be in snowy, blustery March.  So I shelved it for the time being, and tried as best I could to be patient.  (Getting married in the middle helped.)

But now my rotund little friends are here!  And these parfaits I’ve been dreaming about are too.  They were every bit worth the wait.  Rose petal preserves could not be easier to make at home — not much more than lemon juice, sugar, water, and rose petals, and the result is a stunning, ruby-red confection with a heady perfume that makes me think of Edmund and enchanted Turkish delight.  Because I can never get enough rose anything, the granola has roses in it, too — adapted from this gorgeous recipe I’ve been meaning to try from the impeccable 101 Cookbooks.  And, just like I imagined, a few cut figs add a pure, clean sweetness and a softness of texture that seamlessly ties it all together.  Mixed up with a good quality Greek yogurt (or some Vermont Creamery fromage blanc, a new discovery!), it makes for a light but satisfying dessert or an indulgent breakfast.  Or both, like I’ve been having it lately.

I hope you’re having a wonderful home stretch of summer!  If you figure out how to make it last forever, let me know.

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

fig, rose & almond granola parfaits | two red bowls

Fig, rose & almond granola parfaits.

Yield: 1 8-oz jar rose preserves, 3 cups granola.

The rose petal granola is barely adapted from this marvelous recipe by 101 Cookbooks, with almonds instead of walnuts (for no reason other than I like them) and without currants. The black pepper originally gave me pause, but don't be like me and don't be tempted to omit it -- it's the kind of extra touch that makes me marvel at the skill of other bloggers out there, and it brings out the floral notes in the granola in the most surprising, and amazing, way.


  • for the rose petal preserves:
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 oz (about 1/2 cup, packed) dried culinary rose petals, or 1 1/2 oz (1 1/2 cups, packed) fresh, clean petals
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp rosewater (optional, for a stronger rose flavor)
  • 1/2 tsp fruit pectin (optional)
  • for the granola:
  • 2 cups (7 oz) rolled oats

  • 3/4 cups (3 oz) sliced or slivered almonds
1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • small pinch ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp dried rose petals, divided
1/4 cup (1/2 stick or 2 oz) unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 tsp rose water
  • 1/8 tsp ground cardamom (optional)
  • 1 egg white (optional)
  • to assemble:
  • Greek yogurt, regular yogurt of your choice, or fromage blanc
  • fresh figs


  1. To make the rose petal preserves: First, pick over the rose petals to remove any leaves and separate the petals to ensure they release the most flavor. If using fresh petals, wash thoroughly. Combine the sugar, water, and rose petals in a large saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil, then cook for 10 minutes. Add lemon juice and rosewater, if using, and continue to cook for 3-5 more minutes, or until syrup begins to thicken slightly and bubbles form a pink foam on top. For a syrupy preserve, remove from heat and jar. For a jammier, thicker consistency, add the pectin and continue to cook for 3-4 more minutes. Take care not to overcook -- even with the pectin, the consistency will still be somewhat liquid when hot, and will set much more upon cooling. I preferred mine a bit looser since it mixes into the yogurt nicely that way and gives a little room for error in cooking. Either way, pour into sterilized glass containers, seal and let cool completely or chill.
  2. To make the granola: Preheat the oven to 300 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Combine the oats, almonds, salt, pepper, and half of the rose petals in a large mixing bowl. Heat the butter in a small saucepan over low heat until melted, then stir in the honey until combined. Remove from heat and whisk in the rosewater. Pour the honey mixture over the oat mixture and stir until oats are well-coated, at least 30 seconds. For a clumpier granola, stir in the egg white.
  4. Spread the mixture evenly across the baking sheet. Bake, stirring once or twice, for about 35 to 40 minutes, or until the granola is toasty and deeply golden. You may want to rotate the pan once to ensure even baking.
  5. Remove from the oven and press down on the granola with a spatula to form more clumps. Let cool completely, sprinkle with the remaining dried rose petals, then store in an airtight container at room temperature.
  6. For the parfaits: Assemble Greek yogurt, granola, rose petal preserves, and sliced fresh figs in the amount of your choice. Enjoy!


If using dried petals, the resulting preserves will be a bit chewier than with fresh petals. This didn't bother me too much, but if you'd like it to be softer, soak the petals overnight in 1 cup of water, then use the petals and water to make the jam the next day.


  1. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 10:41 am

    Stunning, Cynthia. I love figs too. So exciting when all of natures wonderfulness blooms. And thanks for the link to fromage blanc. I had no idea. This is beautiful. Lol re discovering this gem on seamless with a combo of Heidi’s knowledge. See law and food aren’t that disparate πŸ™‚

  2. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Hello! I found your blog about the yuanyang ice cream and then saw this post. This rose petal preserve is brilliant. A friend once introduced me to a middle east dessert (which unfortunately I don’t know what it is), but it has the wonderful fragrance of rose petals that is delicate and heavenly. This rose petal preserve may well bring back those flavours for me. Thank you for such a creative recipe! πŸ™‚

  3. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    Oh my goodness! Edmund! Cynthia you have completely brought back all kinds of memories from my childhood and gave the most exact flavour profile a set of words could possibly deliver. Thank you so much for this totally gorgeous recipe!

  4. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    Ummm hello, most gorgeous colors EVER. I want to frame one (or all) of these, Cynthia!

    And I’m so stoked to see you posting a fig recipe. I planted a fig tree earlier this year and am just itching to get our first round of figs in so I can cook with them! This is on the list. πŸ™‚

  5. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    Those photos.. my.. oh my.. I absolutely love that photo of the figs on the table.. It is a thing of beauty and so is this parfait. I could eat that granola by itself.

  6. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    I’m been pining for fresh figs to show up at my local market for months. Here’s to hoping this week will be the long-awaited week! I can’t wait to try this gorgeous recipe!

  7. Lynn | The Road to Honey says:

    August 5, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    Hip, hip hurray for fig season!

    I saw little containers of these beauties at my local Whole Foods and got so excited. That is up until I discovered that they were over-the-top squishy (sad face). I’m hoping that my next visit will be more fruitful as I am dying to whip up this stunning parfait. And with these flavors. . .my Persian hubby will think that I am the bestest wifey ever. πŸ™‚

  8. says:

    August 5, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    This breakfast looks utterly beautiful! Rose petals and figs are both ingredients that I have hardly used so would love to try this when fig season arrives here in the Southern hemisphere next summer. Love the idea of infusing the granola with rose petals too – such a gorgeous combination of flavour, scents, textures and colour!

  9. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 3:05 am

    This is so beautiful – I love the pink touch of the preserve – how beautiful! I’m sure it would work so well on top of some thick vanilla gelato too! (Also, another weird but wonderful flavour combination is extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt on vanilla gelato!)

  10. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 8:48 am

    Cynthia, the way you described the rose petal preserves made me melt in my chair a little. That scene with Edmund and the Turkish delight is one of my favourite literary food scenes- I remember reading it (I nearly typed eating it, clearly a Freudian slip) as a child and just wanting, so badly, to try one. When I finally tried one in Turkey a few years ago, they were good, but nowhere as good as the ones described by C.S. Lewis! I’m a huge fan of figs too and am so excited to bring some home so I can make these parfaits!

  11. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    This is SO gorgeous. I love it. You’ve totally convinced me about black pepper + rose petals. I’m allergic to almonds but I’d imagine substituting pistachios (which I can eat) would be really good too. I need to make some granola soon :).

  12. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    I love the way your mind works, my friend. I’m always in awe of how creative, inventive and unique your recipes are. And girl, your photo styling is on point. These photos are absolutely gorgeous (the deep rich colours of the figs and rose preserves just jump off the screen).

  13. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Rotund little friends, indeed! This post is so lovely I went straight to the fridge so I could raid our stash for a little before-dinner snack, but it looks like somebody else got to them before I did. Womp. The color in these photos are absolutely stunning, Cynthia! Allllmost Fall-like, but NOT YET! XO

  14. says:

    August 6, 2015 at 9:15 pm

    You did such a beautiful job explaining that that I toally feel like I can smell it from here! And I’ve never seen a prettier parfait!! As always, gorgeous, everythign!! And YAYYY for figs! πŸ˜€

  15. stephanie says:

    August 7, 2015 at 3:37 pm

    i am obsessed with yogurt granola parfaits and yours is absolutely the most beautiful i’ve seen!!! the figs look absolutely luscious.

  16. says:

    August 10, 2015 at 5:10 pm

    i love love figs! this time of year is so exciting, although like you said, it reminds me that fall is not far off and that’s pretty sad. i never want summer to end! but the figs definitely make it easier. black mission are my favorite- they’re so incredibly lush and sweet that savoring them fresh is probably the best thing you can do. although omg- in this granola?! they must be amazing!!

  17. says:

    August 11, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    This recipe is insanely gorgeous, Cynthia!! I remember visiting my friend in San Ramon in the early fall and we picked figs off of the neighbors tree and I was like CALIFORNIA IS A MAGICAL PLACE. The color on those rose petal preserves makes me weak in the knees!!

  18. says:

    September 26, 2015 at 9:13 pm

    I’m catching up after too long away and these photos, for obvious reasons, stopped me cold in my tracks. You capture (and create) such beauty with your lens, your eyes, your perspective. x

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