I don't like comercially produced sherbets or sorbets, and the few that I have tasted were too sweet and lacking real fruit flavor. I made a sherbet for the very first time using the recipe Annie posted and I was amazed at how good it was. It was smooth and creamy, with the perfect sweetness. It was so good that I knew I was going to make this recipe again using other fruits.
That was exactly two weeks ago and since then I've become the owner of an ice cream maker, made a mango sherbet, a milk chocolate ice cream from Dolce Italiano and received in the mail my copy of The Perfect Scoop. This is the book the Sunday Slow Scoopers are using for their weekly recipe during the next four months. I couldn't join them due to diet restrictions but I found on Lebovitz's book an abundance of recipes for sherbets, sorbets and granitas which I'll be making in the next couple of months.
The Creamy Lemon Sorbet recipe is from Gina De Palma's book, Dolce Italiano. The creaminess comes from Greek yogurt which imparts a nice smooth texture to the sorbet. The addition of limoncello produces a nice extra lemony flavor and sweetness. Gina notes that about an additional tablespoon of simple syrup should be added if the liqueur is omitted from the recipe. The only substitution I made was using agave nectar instead of sugar and simple syrup, adding it in 1/4 cup increments until it reached the sweetness/tart ratio I liked. In the end it came to about a total of 3/4 cup of agave nectar.
Sherbets and sorbets tend to melt rather fast. To help keep them solid for a bit longer, I put the dish in the freezer prior to serving.
2 medium lemons
1 cup plain Greek-style yogurt, such as Total, classic or 2%
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup Simple Syrup (recipe below)
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons limoncello (optional)
Grate the zest of one of the lemons. Squeeze the juice of both lemons into a small bowl and strain it to remove any seeds or pulp. You should have 1/2 cup lemon juice.
Place the juice and grated zest in a blender. Add the yogurt and sugar and blend on medium speed to liquefy the yogurt, about 20 seconds. Add the syrup, water, and, if desired, limoncello and blend to combine thoroughly.
Freeze the sorbet immediately in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's instructions. Makes about 3 cups.
3 1/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 cups water
Place the sugar and water in a 3-quart saucepan. Stir the two together well to ensure that all of the sugar crystals are wet.
Place the pan over medium heat and cook until the mixture comes to a rolling boil. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the syrup to cool completely to room temperature before refrigerating.
Makes about 3 1/2 cups