Monday, July 4, 2011

chill out: strawberry-mango-mint sorbet

Growing up  we had to wait for snow to pack into the bucket of the old ice cream freezer. This meant home-made ice cream was, ironically, a winter treat.  Having traded in the old wooden bucket model for a stainless steel Cuisinart, when the mercury rises I can cool down with home-made ice creams and sorbets. (Although a bowl of my grandfather's chocolate ice cream is a must on Christmas holidays!)

I whipped up a quart of tangy and refreshing strawberry-mango-mint sorbet this weekend.  It was really kind of a "kitchen sink" batch aimed at using up some of the fruit in my fridge. The thickness of the mango puree actually gave this a very "creamy" texture without any dairy. 

 sorbet or sherbet? there is a difference between the two desserts. They both start out with the same ingredients but as soon as you add dairy, it stops being a sorbet and becomes sherbet (sherbet can also contain eggs) So if you want to cut the fat stick to sorbets. (Of course, the sugar means it's not entirely guilt-free!)

Here are some simple guidelines for sorbet - play with the fruit combinations to your taste - if you can puree it, you can make it into sorbet.  This will make about a litre/quart of sorbet.

* 3/4 cup sugar
* about five cups of fruit
* 1/4 cup fruit juice

Combine the sugar and 1/2 cup of water in a small sauce pan to make a thick simple syrup. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for two minutes.  Let cool to room temperature before adding to the puree. 

Chop up about five cups of fruit.  I used 4 mangoes, about a cup of strawberries, and handful of mint for good measure.   You can play with flavour combinations and proportions.  Toss the fruit into the blender and puree.  Depending on what fruit you are using and the texture you want you may want to press the pureed fruit through a fine mesh sieve for extra-smoothness. 

In a medium bowl combine the puree, the simple syrup and 1/4 cup fruit juice.  I used freshly-squeezed lime juice to add a bright tanginess to the mango and strawberry.  Toss the whole lot into your ice cream maker and follow the machine instructions.  The mixture will still be slushy after you remove it from the maker, put it in a container and pop it in the freezer until it hardens up.
 Home made ice creams and sorbets will melt more quickly than commercial products so you may want to chill your dishes before serving.

The mango-strawberry combo came out in a bright shade of coral.  I love pinks, corals and yellow together so I'd love to do a batch of this, a batch of straight mango and a batch of straight strawberry and serve three mini-scoops on a vintage banana split dish!

Don't have an ice cream maker? The benefits of the ice cream maker is that the spinning and the dash introduces air into the mixture and keeps crystals from forming while cooling it, keeping the texture smooth, light and crystal free.  There are methods, albeit a bit more labour-intensive, for making ice cream or sorbets without an ice cream maker and a quick Google search can give you some tips.


Anonymous said...

I just found your blog and I am so glad I did!

miss allaby: the glad girl said...

Thanks so much! Glad you discovered it!

Lisa said...

What a deliciously flavorful sorbet. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog till tomorrow night and I'd love it if you'd come by and link your sorbet up.