Sunday, July 6, 2008
The ice cream maker is my new toy. Well, it's not new; I've had it awhile. But I sort of rediscovered it recently and had a revelation that homemade ice creams and sorbets are easy and better than anything you can buy. Anyone who thinks it's hard to make ice cream clearly has not tried doing it. Prep time can be as little as 10 minutes, and then it goes in a frickin' machine that does the rest of the work for you, and that waiting time is only 20 minutes. Ok, I'll admit, typically you make your mixture, chill it in the fridge, then churn it in the ice cream maker for 20 minutes, and then either serve it soft serve or freeze it. But in that scenario, you're still eating homemade ice cream within an hour and a half.
With three very ripe mangoes in my fridge, there was only one thing for me to do: Mango Sorbet. I found this recipe at Cook's Illustrated. They explain that the purpose of the vodka is not for flavor (though I'd be foolish not to recognize that enhanced flavor is an added benefit), but actually, vodka makes the texture of the completed sorbet more silky smooth as opposed to icy. But fyi, I've made sorbet without alcohol, and while vodka does seem to make a difference, the alcohol-free version is still perfectly enjoyable. You'll be a-okay either way.
Recipe from Cook's Illustrated
3 medium mangoes, peeled, pitted, and flesh pureed with 1/2 cup cold water until smooth
3/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
2 tablespoons lemon juice from 1 large lemon
1 tablespoon vodka
1. Combine mango puree, sugar, lemon juice, and alcohol in large bowl. Stir on and off for several minutes until sugar has dissolved. (Or, to speed chilling process in next step, combine ingredients in a metal bowl set over a larger bowl filled with ice water.) Rub finger along bottom of bowl to see if sugar has dissolved.
2. Pour mixture into small container. Seal and refrigerate until mixture is no more than 40 degrees. (If mixture has been stirred over a bowl of ice water, it may already be cold enough, and this step may be omitted.)
3. Pour chilled mixture into container of an ice cream machine and churn until frozen.
4. Scoop frozen sorbet into a container. Seal and transfer container to freezer for several hours to allow sorbet to firm up. (Sorbet can be kept frozen for up to 3 days.)
Step-by-Step in Pictures
Slice up those mangoes and puree them in the food processor.
It should look like a thick but smooth soup.
Then add the sugar, lemon juice, and vodka...
Transfer the mixture to a pourable bowl like a large glass measuring cup and chill it in the fridge.
Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and churn for about 20 minutes.
It will start to thicken.
Transfer to a storage container and either serve it or freeze it. YUMMM.