Sometime during the second half of the 1600’s, the first European recipe for sorbet was written down. It happened in Naples, Italy and is attributed to the first person to also put pen to paper with a recipe for ice cream, Antonio Latini. The story goes that the idea of mixing fruit juices and ice actually came to Italy through Chinese connections and there it has been known to be made since the seven hundreds.
Sorbet was considered an elegant refined food, enjoyed by the courts of Europe before expanding into a wider population. There are tales of lemon flavoured sorbets being stored in cool caves near Sorrento, covered with ferns for extra insulation.
You will need:
3 cups chopped rhubarb
2 Tbsp. water
2 Tbsp. rose water
1/4 cup rose infused honey
Wash and dice the rhubarb. Place in a small pot and add the water and rosewater. Bring to a boil, reduce the temperature and simmer until tender, 7 – 10 minutes.
Once the rhubarb is soft as shown in the photo above, add the rose infused honey.
I am using my rose honey for this recipe but I know that that is not something everyone has handy on their shelves. Regular honey is an alternative that will probably mean adjusting the rosewater. Pulse per the instructions below and taste. If needed add a little extra rosewater by the teaspoonful, until a desired strength is achieved.
Place the mixture in a blender and pulse until smooth.
Once smooth, transfer to a sieve and press the mixture through, ensuring that any remaining long rhubarb threads are removed from the mixture.
Option two is to transfer the mixture to a bowl and place in the freezer.
The trick to a good sorbet without a machine is to keep breaking down the ice crystals while the mixture freezes. The smaller the crystals the smoother the texture in your mouth.
If you like a texture closer to a Wendy’s Frosty, stop and serve when semi frozen. If the plan to serve at a later time, give the sorbet five to ten minutes out of the freezer to soften before serving.
If fully frozen is also possible to chop and return the frozen sorbet to the blender and pulse one or two times, enough to breakup the crystals and soften the sorbet one last time before scooping into dishes.
Sorbets are considered palate cleansers. Something that clears away the taste of the previous course before the next one is offered, allowing for a full experience of each dish.
Today we rarely sit down to 14 or 20 course meals and sorbet has become a tasty dessert offering. A light, fresh and often tangy way to end a meal, delicious proof that summer if it has not yet arrived where you are, is on its way.
Rhubarb Rose Sorbet from My Kitchen Wand