Me and the gang have been chatting on Twitter about what our next #baketogether project should be.. (If you are wondering what #baketogether is? Read through this post. ) Lots of good ideas popped up including a take on my Choco Chip Double Decker Brownies (thx for the Decker love Sheri ) but I’m thinking we should save that for fall or maybe later this summer. I mentioned Ice Cream as our starting off point and several people, including Barb at Creative Culinary pointed out that not everyone has an ice cream maker. So, being that we are a very inclusive, friendly group, I switched from ice cream over to a sorbet because that way, folks can use the makers if they got ‘em or, instead, they can use the same mixture and make it into a granita.. both wonderfully refreshing and perfect for a summertime dessert (think “Slurpy Headache, Brain Freeze, etc).. or, if you are anything like me,just call it breakfast.
One decision down.. the next was choosing a flavor..
Two days ago, I was at the brand new Whole Foods that opened up less than 5 miles from my house – thank the heavens – and their bins were filled with all sorts of summer fruits – peaches, mangoes, nectarines, plums, apricots (including red velvet ones – ever so pretty) and berries galore. No, none all of these guys are local quite yet but they will be in just a blink of an eye. I promise. After much sniffing, eye-balling and touching (yes.. I’m well know for groping fruit at my market. Hey, a girl’s got a right to the best fruit, right? Exactly.), the fragrant, ruby red strawberry betties ( born and raised locally) were just begging (and yes, fruit does, in fact, speak to me and I know I’m not alone on this so ‘fess up fruit whisperers.You know who you are) to be whizzed up and made into a sorbet/granita..
OK.. so we have a recipe (see below).. now it’s time for everyone to switch it up. Will you:
- add a chopped herb? maybe lemon basil?
- infuse the sugar syrup with mint or maybe lemongrass?
- change the fruit?
- turn it into ice cream by using heavy cream or half n half instead of the water?
- use another liquid instead of the water?
- make Sorbet Sandwiches? try my choco wafers I made for Fine Cooking?
- make a frozen pie or Bombe
- serve it with a sauce?
- make a parfait?
- make your own cones?
How about all of the above?
I’ll tip my hand and tell you that I’m thinking of using peaches with a touch of cream and packing it into a sweet & salty pretzel crust and maybe serving with a drizzle of caramel or chocolate.
Can’t wait to make and taste everyone’s Strawberry Sorbet ~ YOUR WAY!
ps.. that’s my Tierney’s hand in the pic above.. you’ll be hearing from her in an upcoming guest post.
Summer Strawberry Sorbet
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
1 quart strawberries, rinsed and well dried
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Pinch table salt
1. Have ready an ice cream maker. ( I use an electric Cuisinart model with a 1 quart canister.) Arrange a 4 1/2 x 8 1/4 inch loaf dish ( I like this shape because it’s perfect for scooping but feel free to use any size you like) in the freezer making sure it is level and secure.
2. Put the sugar and water into a medium saucepan. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Set aside (You can refrigerate this syrup up to 4 days before continuing.).
3. Trim the strawberries and cut in halves or quarters depending on how big they are. Pile the berries into a food processor and whiz until smooth, about 1 minute (you’ll have 2 1/4 cups). Add the fruit puree to the sugar syrup along with the lemon juice, zest and salt. Stir until blended. Set aside to cool completely and refrigerate until chilled or up to 1 day. For faster cooling, set the pan over a bowl filled with ice, stirring occasionally, until well chilled.
4. Pour the chilled mixture into the ice cream maker and process according to manufacturer’s instructions. Serve immediately (it will be soft) or scrape into the chilled dish, cover and freeze until firm or up to 2 days.
No Ice Cream Maker? No Problem.. Make a Granita:
In place of ice cream machine, switch-in the following:
Arrange a 9 x13 -inch baking dish or 9 1/2 cup rectangular plastic container (Ziploc) in the freezer making sure it is level and secure. (other sizes and shapes work too but you’ll need to adjust your stirring and scraping times accordingly.) Follow the directions for making the mixture. Pour the chilled mixture into the baking dish and freeze about 2 hours until frozen around the edges. Every 30 minutes, stir and scrape the mixture with a table fork. Freeze and scrape until the ice crystals are loose and frozen.