I can’t get over how delicious rhubarb rosewater syrup is. The recipe comes from the elegant Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks, whose photography, books and recipes are wonderful. You will want to reserve the rhubarb to eat once the syrup is poured off. Use the syrup to make beautiful, flavorful summer cocktails. Or to top vanilla ice cream for a sundae. It’s a treat over labne with pistachios on top for breakfast or an afternoon snack. Go easy on the rosewater; mine took only a few drops to enhance the syrup. If you’re not a rosewater fan, just leave it out altogether, and this is still a winner.
In a small heavy saucepan, mix the rhubarb with the sugar. Let it sit like this, off the heat, and macerate for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the water and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Simmer for 20 minutes, until the rhubarb begins to break down.
Carefully strain into a bowl through a cheesecloth-lined strainer. Transfer to a clean saucepan, stir in the lime juice, and bring to a simmer. Let simmer over medium heat for another 15 minutes or until the syrup reduces and is slightly thickened. Remove from heat and stir in the rosewater a drop at a time, tasting to see if you've got enough. Allow the syrup to cool completely before transferring to a glass jar.
Keep the syrup refrigerated and use over yogurt or ice cream, and in lemonade, soda water or cocktails. The recipe makes one medium jar of syrup, which will last about a week.