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The Times
  • Jim Hillibish: How to make sorbet at home

  • The key to good sorbet is fresh fruit juice. This orange recipe is my favorite, garnering a blast of flavor from the oil in fresh orange peel. I’d serve it with chilled orange slices to complete the rapture.

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  • You might be tempted to write off sorbet as a casualty of our terribly skewered economy. Its price increases have been brutal, often taking 25-cent leaps.
    Well, forget that. Make your own for way less than $2 for six servings. Exchange about 15 minutes of labor (not counting freezing) for a fresh batch that is sure to blow away your guests.
    Sorbet is not just for dessert. Italians eat/slurp sorbet to prep palates before the main course. It works.
    The optional alcohol in the adult version lowers its freezing temperature, resulting in a softer texture that screams “more.” Don’t be tempted to run it through a blender. Sorbet is not a smoothie. It is dense and packed with natural fruit flavor.
    There are a lot of items similar to sorbet but not the real thing. Don’t call it “sherbet.” That’s made with milk or cream. There never are egg or milk  products in true sorbet.
    A Slurpee is made from freezing soda pop. A snow cone is shaved ice with fruit-flavored sugar syrup, often artificial, dumped on top. Neither approach the startling flavor of sorbet.
    The key to good sorbet is fresh fruit juice. This orange recipe is my favorite, garnering a blast of flavor from the oil in fresh orange peel. I’d serve it with chilled orange slices to complete the rapture.
    Really Orange Sorbet
    1 cup water
    1/2 cup sugar
    Peel of 1 orange, julienned, without white pith
    2 cups fresh orange juice, the real stuff
    2 tablespoons orange juice frozen concentrate
    1 tablespoon Grand Marnier orange liqueur, optional
    Combine  water, sugar and orange peel, bring to a boil, lower to medium and simmer five minutes. Cool and discard orange peel.
    Combine syrup, orange juice, orange concentrate and Grand Marnier. If you have an ice-cream maker, freeze for 20 minutes. Or place in a bowl and freeze. When ice forms around the edges, stir with spatula. Continue the freeze-stir routine until sorbet has proper texture, about three times. Hard freeze if not used immediately, then defrost somewhat just before serving.
    Garnish with chilled, fresh-orange slices. Serves 6.
    The new frozen dessert makers
    Cuisinart has perfected the art of making sorbet, frozen yogurt and ice cream without ice or salt. It’s ICE-21 machine crafts 1 1/2 quarts in about 20 minutes.
    The device contains a freezing liquid in a double-insulated bowl. Freeze it for eight hours, and it’s ready to make dessert. Pour ingredients into the bowl, and turn on the electric paddles. In 20 minutes (less for sorbet), your frozen dessert is ready.
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