In this sweltering heat the only dessert (or meal for that matter!) that I can stomach is a refreshing ice cream, or thirst-quenching sorbet. The inspiration for this recipe, I have to admit, came after sneaking a couple of cherry sours from my nephew’s secret sweet stash. I hope he doesn’t notice. I love cherries, and the lime and basil just add a lovely dimension to the sorbet.
This is a fairly simple dish to make and best of all, you don’t need any fancy equipment. Just a saucepan to make the sugar syrup; a blender to puree the fruit; a sieve and a lidded container. That’s all! So give it try and let me know how you get on.
I am linking this post to Domestic Sluttery’s Just Desserts Club, who are running a Citrus Theme this month.
Just a few things to remember before you start….
The amount of sugar you need in the recipe will depend on the sweetness of your cherries, and on how tart you like your sorbet. Me, I like mine on the sour side. You will need to use equal parts of sugar and water when making the syrup.
Who doesn’t love a bit of alcohol? But here, the vodka actually serves a purpose. It keeps the texture soft. Don’t get carried away though! The spirit doesn’t freeze well and you don’t want to end up with a runny mess! I made that mistake the first time round and ended up drinking it as a cocktail!
- 800g cherries (minus 10 that ended up in my mouth during the pitting process!)
- 75g-100g sugar
- 75ml-100ml water
- 2-3 limes, juice and zest
- 5-8 basil leaves
- vodka (optional)
- Put the sugar, water and about 5 basil leaves into a medium sized saucepan. Place on medium heat and let the mixture simmer until it has thickened to a syrup-like consistency. Allow to cool.
- In the meantime, wash and pit the cherries – unless you have a cherry pitter, prepare for very messy hands!
- Blend the cherries, lime juice and zest until it becomes a puree. I added an extra couple of basil leaves, just to make sure they stood up to the intense flavours of the cherries and limes.
- Once you have formed a puree, add the sugar syrup and mix well.
- Strain the contents through a sieve and pour into a lidded container (or ice cream maker if you have one – in which case follow your machine’s instructions). Add two or three tablespoons of vodka and give it a good stir before putting the lid on the container and placing it in the freezer.
- After two hours, run a fork through your sorbet mixture before putting it back in the freezer. My freezer is on its last leg and so it took about ten hours to get the right texture (it shouldn’t take you that long!) and I made sure I kept stirring it every couple of hours to get the right consistency.
- Garnish with basil leaves and cherries. I actually gave an extra squeeze of lime on top of my serving but that’s just because I’m a bit crazy and love very sour flavours.