Strawberry sorbet

October 3, 2010 § Leave a comment

I know it’s fall.  It is already October.  It really snuck up on me this year though.  I was not prepared. We had no summer here in San Francisco.  Not that we ever have much of a summer, but this year, it was especially absent, thanks to the ever-present marine layer.  But, early last week, the temperatures soared, and it actually felt like summer.  A hot summer.  Just for a few days.

On one of these hot summer days, I happened to be at the farmer’s market and someone walked by me with a flat of bright red strawberries.  They were so fragrant, I actually smelled them before I saw them.  I instantly had an idea that would beat the heat and help me justify buying so many strawberries: strawberry sorbet.

I cobbled together a recipe from a few different sources, but it was pretty much inspired by David Lebovitz and his recipe for strawberry frozen yogurt. Here’s what you need:

  • 16 oz. fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Triple Sec
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • pinch of salt

1. Mix the berries, sugar and Triple Sec (or another liquor you prefer) in a bowl.   Cover the bowl and set aside for 1-2 hours at room temperature, stirring occasionally.

2.  Add the lime juice and salt and mix well.  Pour the mixture in to a blender and puree until smooth.

3. If desired, pass the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer in to another bowl to remove any strawberry seeds.

4. Chill for 1 hour.

5. Transfer to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Notes on this sorbet: The flavors were really quite spectacular, if I do say so myself.  Of course, it is essential that the strawberries were perfectly ripe and juicy and sweet, and really needed no doctoring at all.  But, the lime juice and the Triple Sec added a great hint of citrus, and also highlighted the strawberry flavor.

My main problem with this recipe was that the sorbet did not freeze in my ice cream maker.  The last time I used my ice cream maker, I also was unable to get a frozen product, so I think there is some kind of problem with it.  I have the standard Cuisinart home cook’s ice cream maker, and although I froze the canister for two days before hand, that didn’t seem to be enough.  After leaving the mixture in the ice cream maker for quite some time, I ended up transferring it to an air-tight container and putting it in the freezer.  During the first couple of hours of freezing, I stirred it around a few times, and then let it freeze overnight.  This was less than ideal, because the texture ended up being something more akin to italian ice rather than a creamy sorbet.  The flavor was still delicious, but that was not the texture I was hoping to achieve.

I also did not end up with a great yield for this recipe.  It yielded approximately 2 cups of sorbet, but I think this was because I decided to strain it, and a lost a lot of the mixture to my strainer.  So, my recommendation would be to increase the recipe maybe 1.5 times if you are planning on straining it– or do a better job straining than me!

Overall, the strawberry sorbet was a pretty good send-off for summer.  I think I can move on to fall now.

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