Last month I shared Cherry Sorbet, and today I’d like to discuss the simplicity of any fruit sorbet. Remember sorbets are made with just fruit and a little sugar and aren’t nearly as high in calories and fat as many other dessert recipes. They are a perfect summer dessert and so simple to make. You can use almost any kind of fruit and even use a mix of several fruits for your own unique sorbet. This really isn’t a recipe as much as a how to for your summer fruit.
The basic recipe is frozen fruit, sweetener (simple sugar syrup, maple syrup, corn syrup, or agave nectar), lemon juice (unless you add a more sour fruit like kiwi), and a food processor. Not only does sorbet cool you down, they are healthier, super easy to make, gluten and dairy free, and vegan. Plus they taste fantastic!
You can use use overripe fruits from the market or bags of frozen fruit. Overripe fruit requires less sugar as the fruit is really sweet to begin with. For some fruits, you will need a little salt added to help keep the sorbet scoopable. This is especially true of citrus fruits like lemon, oranges, and grapefruit. Fat Secret’s app has a handy reference on sodium in fruit sorbet. Raspberries and mango do not require salt but you certainly could add a pinch. The quality of sorbet is dependent on the fruit. Since it is pretty much frozen fruit, the better the fruit, the better the taste. Nothing matters more to a sorbet’s flavor than the fruit you start with. Fruit high in pectin (berries, stone fruit, and grapes) or fiber (mangoes, pears, and bananas) are high in viscosity and full of body, and they make for an especially creamy sorbet that approximates the texture of ice cream. That’s because pectin and fiber act as thickeners, their long starchy molecules working like sugar to physically get in the way of growing ice crystals. The secret to great sorbet is the amount of sugar needed. Really sweet fruit requires less sweetener. Four cups fruit purée to one cup sugar is the basic ratio but since every fruit is different, every sorbet may need more or less sugar (less for super-sweet mangoes, for instance). Most sorbet recipes call for a simple sugar syrup which is basically sugar and water. Experiment with your batches of sorbet and try adding pineapple or orange juice or a white wine to the fruit. You’re then adding more flavor instead of water. For pears, Riesling white wine is nice.
First up is raspberry or blueberry sorbet. If you start with fresh fruit, place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place in freezer to freeze. Then use for sorbet or place in air-tight container and store in freezer. I have a friend who buys lots of fresh chemical-free blue berries at the farmer’s market when they are in season. He freezes them to use throughout the rest of the year. They taste so much better than the bags of frozen berries in the supermarket. The nice thing about raspberries and blueberries is the size – no peeling or cutting necessary. Process the frozen fruit for sorbet, and if it needs a little liquid, add a tablespoon of wine, orange juice, or even lemonade. Remember sorbet is only limited by your imagination. Just remember it is best to use this simple sorbet immediately after blending. Since this is a recipe of fruit, sweetener and water, if you leave it in the freezer for several days, you’ll end up with a block of ice. To make a longer lasting sorbet, you’ll need to add more sugar and probably alcohol too. Sugar and alcohol prevent the total freezing of the fruit. Try a lemon vodka sorbet or a berry sorbet with white wine. I’ll give 2 versions of basic sorbet below. One quick process and eat sorbet that only takes minutes. A second sorbet with alcohol for a longer lasting treat. By the way, if you have a sorbet that is too icy or too sweet or too tart, you can put it in the blender and add your favorite alcohol for a fruity boozy slush – never waste that fruit!
Quick Raspberry/Blueberry Sorbet
Use organic when available, serves 1
Simple Sugar Syrup
- 8 oz white sugar
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup frozen berries per serving
- 3 tablespoons corn syrup, honey, (or simple sugar syrup)
- 2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Combine sugar and water in sauce pan
- Heat until sugar dissolves until syrup develops
- Remove from heat
- Cool and store in glass bottle/jar
- Keep in refrigerator until needed
- Place frozen berries in food processor
- Pulse fruit in short bursts as blades heat up
- Small fruit purees faster
- Add syrup a tablespoon at a time while pulsing
- Add squeeze of lemon juice and pulse a few seconds to blend
- Taste test and adjust as needed
- Serve immediately
- Optional place in freezer for up to 1 hour for firmer sorbet
- Optional sprinkle berries on top
Longer Lasting Mango Sorbet
Use organic when available, serves 2
- 2 cups frozen mango pieces
- 1 tablespoons agave nectar (or simple sugar syrup)
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 1/3 cup rum or coconut milk
- Pinch of salt
- Place frozen mango in food processor
- Pulse fruit in short bursts
- Add rest of the ingredients and process until smooth
- Scrape sides of bowl as needed
- Taste test and adjust as needed
- Optional add a dash of mint
- Serve immediately
- Or place back in freezer for several hours
- If put in freezer, remove 10 minutes before serving
- Optional sprinkle with coconut
This post was featured at:
Get exclusive free printables & all the news straight to your mailbox!
Please see my Link Parties page for the parties where this post was shared.