Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Food Processor Gets a Workout Day 2: Sorbet

There are about 12 food blogs that I have subscribed to through my Google reader (my favorites are listed in the sidebar) and for the entire summer I feel like about 80% of the posts I have read are recipes for ice creams and sorbets.  Needless to say, I feel a little left out since I do not have a stand mixer with an ice cream maker attachment or an ice cream maker itself.  In college, a friend had an ice cream maker that looked like a giant hamster ball.  We filled the ball with ice and the smaller ball with cream and rolled it around on the floor for what felt like hours to try to get our ice cream to freeze.  I've considered making my own homemade ice cream maker (a small tin can inside a larger tin can), but there's no way I'll be able to convince Shadow to chase a coffee tin around so I can make some ice cream.  So, it looked like I was out of luck when it came to creating delicious ice creams and sorbets this summer.

That was, until, I saw a recipe in Runner's World where the author made sorbet in a food processor.  Bingo! I make smoothies in the blender all of the time, I could definitely just freeze one of them and call it sorbet, right?  Well even though I am calling it a sorbet, it was definitely thicker than the normal sorbet you buy at the store, but nonetheless it was still very delicious.

The RW's article mentioned adding red wine to the sorbet in order to help the fruit break down.  In the batch of sorbet that I made I did use the red wine, but I left it out of the ingredients here because it's not exactly kid friendly.  I was not able to taste the wine in my sorbet, however I'm not sure how much it actually helped in breaking down the fruit - the food processor took care of that for me.  Whether or not you choose to add wine is entirely up to you, but I'd suggest only using about 2 tbsp.

I decided to make a mint raspberry sorbet.  I bought frozen raspberries, put them in the food processor, and ground them until I got a paste.  I then added water to make the sorbet thinner (and to also help it freeze) and then just stuck the whole thing in the freezer.  It froze fine, and I took it out and it tasted just as I thought it would - like frozen raspberries.  The one thing I'd want to change about this sorbet is to see if I could remove the seeds.  I don't think I could put the sorbet through a sieve, but in all honesty the seeds were not too bothersome.  Leaving the seeds in reminded you that you were eating fresh sorbet, not that neon colored ice you find in giant plastic tubs at the supermarket.  The mint leaves gave the sorbet a refreshing and light taste - really a treat on an extremely hot day.  You could certainly mix yogurt into this sorbet rather than water, but I was sharing this with a good friend who's lactose-intolerant and I really did not miss the yogurt at all.  I'm sure I'll be making different sorbet flavors with my food processor to help me get through the rest of the summer.  Take that fancy ice cream machines!

Also, don't forget to comment with suggestions for food processed recipes!  I'll be picking out my favorite over the weekend to make and post about here!

Raspberry Mint Sorbet
Makes about 3 cups
Inspired by a recipe from Runner’s World

- 1 12 oz bag frozen raspberries
- 2 tbsp mint leaves, packed
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 6 tbsp water

Add the frozen raspberries, mint leaves, and sugar to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until you get a paste.  Add the water to the sorbet 1 tbsp at a time through one of the holes in the cover of the food processor until the sorbet runs over itself as the blades are turning (have you ever made a smoothie in a blender and gotten that “tornado effect” with the hole in the center and the liquid running over itself?  That’s the consistency you want).  Freeze for at least an hour. 

Tips for using your food processor
- Whenever you're adding a liquid to the contents in your food processor, add it through one of the holes in the cover.  This way, you get a steady stream of liquids and you won't add too much at a time.  

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