For the third exciting instalment of RocketandSquash’s [yes, that is the name I was christened with, and yes I was bullied at school] small adventures with a cheap ice cream maker, I decided to give sorbet a go.
After a bit of research, it appeared there were about three options. The first involved egg white; the second a bit of heat and general syrup making; the third pulsing canned fruit and freezing it.
Never one to ignore the easiest route, I chose the third. Could it really be as simple as this to make a sorbet?
I made a lychee sorbet because I thought this would be both relatively unusual and refreshing. So it proved. The addition of lime and a touch of mint gave the sorbet a bit more depth than if it had been made of just a single fruit.
As a man, the idea of peeling and stoning loads of testicles, sorry, I meant lychees, freaks the shit out of me. Using tinned fruit circumnavigated that issue and also provided a ready made liquid and sweetener. It also made this an incredibly quick task.
Lychee doesn’t seem to break down into a completely smooth puree, so there may be silkier sorbets. However, the syrup from the can thinned the fruit mix out and, of course, carries loads of flavour too.
So, base, this is an easy and tasty recipe. Would work as a palate cleanser, on the side of a rich chocolate or a fruity (I’m thinking raspberry or mango) dessert, or as a refreshing summer pud in its own right (what I actually used it for is also detailed below).
Lychee, lime and mint sorbet
(makes about 1 litre)
2 x 425g cans of lychee
The syrup from one of them
Juice and finely grated rind of 1 lime
2 leaves of fresh mint, finely chopped
A dessert spoon of caster sugar
Whizz up the fruit. Try and get it as smooth and non-bitty as possible. Add the syrup from one of the cans, the lime juice, rind and mint. Pulse again briefly. You need about 700ml to make a litre of sorbet. Add some of the syrup from the second can if necesssary.
Taste – it will be a little sweet already, but add the sugar and taste again. Should have lifted the flavour. Add more if you think it can take it.
Pour into your ice cream machine, following the usual instructions. Alternatively put into a tupperware, freeze and every hour or so stir around until it’s frozen (and sorbet like).
I served the sorbet on the side of a bitter chocolate tart.
This was made using 4 eggs and 150g caster sugar, whisked; 3 tbsp golden syrup and 4 tbsp soured cream, stirred into eggs; 100g of at least 70% chocolate and 150g butter melted on a bain-marie and combined with 400g best quality cocoa powder and an unhealthy pinch of salt, all also stirred into the eggs. The filling was poured into a blind baked tart shell (my usual method – click here), before being cooked at 150C for 45 minutes, and left to cool and shrink down to a dense fudgy consistency.
[If you're inclined to click on things, here's a link to the 2011 Observer Food Monthly Awards nominations page. Someone will appreciate your nomination. You may win a prize.]