A Partridge in a Pear (Cider Sorbet) Tree

I spent this weekend cursing up a storm working on my last paper of the semester. Let’s just say that I saved the worst for last. The paper was daunting and tedious, and the only way that I was going to get it done was by telling myself that I would get a reward at the end. That reward was sorbet.

As I mentioned in my last post, I’ve had cider sorbet on the mind. I found a recipe on The Kitchn and was going to follow it exactly, until Mike snagged some of this pear cinnamon cider from Trader Joe’s.

As I said I would last time, I decreased the sugar in this recipe from 2/3 cup to 1/2 cup. Add 1 1/2 cups of cider to the sugar, bring to a boil, and then simmer for 10-15 minutes. I just popped the thing in the microwave for 10 minutes.

Then whisk in another 3/4 cup cider and 1 1/2 cups of unsweetened applesauce

2 T of our old friend tequila

2 T triple sec. I’m starting to think these two are the new power couple

Stir together until ingredients are incorporated. Cover and refrigerate overnight. I know, this is the hardest part. If I hadn’t heated the cider and the sugar I probably wouldn’t have refrigerated it.

I waited about 24 hours, but that’s just because that’s how long it took me to write this stupid paper.

Add the mixture to your ice cream maker and freeze for 20-25 minutes

Warning: you will have an intense urge to dip your spoon into the machine 15 minutes in. This is common, and is best remedied by succumbing to said urge.

After 25 minutes, the sorbet should be nice and thick and ready for eating.

Oh man.

This was phenomenal.  I know that I said the mango sorbet was great, and it was, but if I could only eat one sorbet for a year, it would be this. Mike said that there were 3 layers of flavor. At first, you get a taste of the applesauce, then the pear and cinnamon, and lastly, an aftertaste of tequila. Seriously unbelievable. I didn’t add any spices because the cider was spiced, but this would be great with some nutmeg, ginger, and maybe cloves.

 

Pear Cinnamon Cider Sorbet

Adapted from The Kitchn

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 cup pear cinnamon cider

1 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

3/4 cup pear cinnamon cider

2 T tequila

2 T triple sec

Stir together cider and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat , stirring occasionally. Simmer for about 15 minutes.

Whisk in applesauce, cider, tequila, and triple sec. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Freeze as directed in the instructions for your particular ice cream maker.

 

Make this sorbet. Right now. What are you waiting for?

–Ariel

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Scooop There It Is

As promised, here I am with a post featuring my new ice cream maker! I know that many people are confused as to why I’m posting about a frozen dessert in December. With the holiday season upon us, I know that there are many delicious recipes circulating the internet for flaky pies, decadent cakes, crumbly cookies, and mouth-watering candies. All of those are well and good, but to be honest, they don’t tickle my fancy the way that ice cream does. I’ve mentioned before that I’m not much of a cake person, and while cookies and candy are great, I find that after a few bites, I don’t really want any more. I guess that’s a good thing in some sense, but when I have dessert, I want a decent-sized portion.

Enter: ice cream/sorbet/sherbet/gelato/granita. I don’t think I will ever get sick of frozen desserts. Well, I might get sick from them, but I will never get sick of them. See, I have a slight lactose intolerance, so I tend to stick to sorbet, but every once in a while, I eat ice cream anyway. It’s not so bad, I just get a stomach ache and then get extremely bloated and gassy. It’s probably worse for those around me than it is for me. TMI?

I kept going back and forth between recipes, as I wanted the first ice cream maker trial to be a good one. Anything seasonal is a win in my book, so I was considering apple cider sorbet. Just as I was about to grab my keys to go to the store, I spied 2 mangoes sitting in the fruit basket. Keeping with my resourceful motto to “use what you have,” I decided that I would make sorbet that required no trip to the supermarket. A quick search online led me to David Lebovitz’s recipe for mango sorbet.

I scanned over the recipe, and realized that I didn’t have any rum and had just used my last lime in a black bean stew. So what did I do? I improvised, of course! I went to the freezer, and grabbed a bottle of tequila that has been there for far too long (shows how much of a party animal I am). Seeing the tequila reminded me that I had a bottle of triple sec in the back of the fridge, which would stand in for the lime juice.

Seems like I’m making a margarita rather than sorbet right? Well trust me on this, because you will not be disappointed.

Add the fruit of 2 mangoes, 2/3 cup sugar, 2/3 cup water, 4 tsps triple sec, 1 T tequila, and a sprinkle of salt to your blender. Blend on the lowest setting at first, then increase the speed to ensure that there are no chunks of fruit left.

See? Nice and smooth. At this point, the recipe said that you should chill your mixture for an hour or so. Since I wanted instant gratification, I skipped this step. Whoops?

When your ice cream maker is all assembled, turn it on, and pour the mixture into the bowl.

It will look liquidy and delicious. Since I was so excited, I checked on it every 5 minutes. If you’re not as excitable as I am, you can check on it after 20 minutes.

This is the sorbet after 25 minutes. Does it look delightful?

The consistency is a cross between sorbet and soft-serve. I had to resist all urges to grab a big spoon and dig right in.

I took the classy broad approach and scooped the sorbet into a bowl. Don’t worry, I licked the ice cream scoop when I was done.

This sorbet was so so good. A slight aftertaste of tequila and triple sec led me to calling it Mango-rita Sorbet. I will absolutely make this again, maybe with a little less sugar as it was a touch too sweet for me, and mayhaps add some lime zest?

Mango Sorbet

Adapted from David Lebovitz

Ingredients
2 Large, Ripe Mangoes (2 lbs, 1 kg), peeled and pitted
2/3 Cup (130 g) Sugar
2/3 Cup (160 ml) Water
4 tsp Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice, plus more to taste (or triple sec)
1 Tbsp Dark Rum, plus more to taste (or tequila)
Pinch of Salt

Method

Cut the mangoes into chunks and put them in a blender with the sugar, water, lime juice, rum, and salt.

Puree the mixture until smooth. Taste, then add more lime juice or rum if desired. Allow the mixture to chill thoroughly, then freeze it in an ice cream maker.

 

Do any of you wonderful readers have a dessert that you never get sick of? Do you enjoy frozen treats even in the dead of winter? E-mail us at apositiveregard (at) gmail (dot) come!

 

–Ariel

Freeze Tag

In an effort to save money and resist impulse purchases, I frequently convince myself that I don’t need something (clothing, kitchen utensils, gourmet food item, etc.). I’ve gotten better about distinguishing between need and want, and when I should actually buckle down and spend money.

At the beginning of the summer, I went to a Marshall’s on Long Island to peruse the kitchen gadgets. I found a whole shelf of popsicle molds, and was drawn to a set of “Monster Pops.” After carrying the box around the store for a while, I came to the conclusion that I didn’t need them and that I could probably find them online for a better price.

The week after was brutally hot and humid. Only one thing could remedy my constant state of sticky and uncomfortable, and that thing was popsicles. Out of curiosity, I browsed various websites for popsicle molds. I couldn’t find Monster Pops online anywhere, and the molds that I did find were at least twice as expensive as the ones at Marshall’s. Immediately after work, I hurried over to Marshall’s, my mind racing with possible flavor combinations. Iced coffee pops! Strawberry lime!

As I power walked over to the once popsicle mold-stocked section, my excitement level began to deflate. There was a display of airtight canisters where the molds used to be. I checked all the aisles with no success. I ventured home and sulked, because what else can you do when all the popsicle molds are gone?

Fast forward 3 weeks. I was shopping at TJ Maxx with my mom, when I remembered I wanted a spring loaded ice cream scoop. To my surprise, I found a great stainless steel one for $5! I turned around to show my mom, and a saw something colorful out of the corner of my eye. I took a step to the left and proceeded to stare with my mouth agape for 10 seconds. When I snapped out of it, I snatched up the box to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating. Monster Pops. The only box in sight. MINE!!!!! I hugged the box the whole way to the checkout line.

Marissa and I tossed around a few ideas for flavors, but ultimately decided that we wanted something simple, fruity, and a little boozy. A quick recipe search at thekitchn led us to this recipe:

6 cups cubed watermelon, seeds and rind removed (about 4 pounds)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon freshly grated lime zest

We put the watermelon chunks, lime juice and zest, and a splash of clear tequila into the blender and blended until smooth.

Pour into the molds, freeze overnight, and enjoy!

Delicious and adorable! Looking at them puts a smile on my face, and eating homemade popsicles makes my smile that much wider. Anything that produces instant happiness is, in my opinion, a justifiable purchase.