If you took a look at my wardrobe, you’d see that I ditch most patterns and desire muted solids. Boring, sure–but only if I fail to add a bright yellow scarf or a bold pair of earrings. This is also kind of how I like my ice cream.
No, I do not like my frozen foods wrapped in pashminas–that’s weird and I’d probably die. Biggest fur ball ever. What should translate here is my liking for interchangeable components. While classic vanilla will always be this plain-Jane’s favored flavor, I can’t help but crave recipes with an unexpected twist–which is why it’s no surprise that I spent my summer hunting down fool-proof recipes for both green tea and lavender ice cream (both of which they toootally forgot about at Baskin Robbins, by the way. They should really consider broadening their herbal horizons).
While both of these recipes were delicious, I’ll have to admit that this raspberry basil sorbet pretty much won me over. It’s delicious on about…nine different levels. The ninth level being a cloud. And best of all, it’s dairy free!
I can almost hear the lactose intolerant chorus.
Sure, it’s great that this sorbet is low-calorie and all, but you must also know that it’s 110% delicious. The basil is unexpected, but not in a gross, interruptive way–like hidden peas stirred into mashed potatoes and plopped onto your plate as a kid; “Gross–I now fear mashed potatoes. Thanks mom.” Rather, the basil is refreshing, like mint, and compliments the sweetness of the raspberry more than you might anticipate (these flavors also work excellently together in home-brewed sweet tea, FYI). If that didn’t convince you, then I suppose the sheer beauty of these complimentary colors should. Presentation, my friends, is a beautiful thing–and so is the season of summer. I suggest savoring the last few weeks like you will this sorbet, because butternut squash is about to dish & tell all up in this place!
Moral of the post? If you’re trying to be healthier than Dairy Queen standards but can’t help but squeeze some soft-serve out of these last couple weeks, consider churning up this simple recipe. And hand-pick your berries, while you’re at it. September is great for it–and a little exercise before spooning sorbet never hurt anybody :).
Raspberry Basil Sorbet
(Recipe slightly adapted from Chef Rushayne, from the demo Savory Custards)
6 cups raspberries, preferably fresh
¼ cup plus two tablespoons water
1 ¼ cups simple syrup (recipe follows)
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
½ bunch basil
Combine sugar, basil and water in sauce pot over medium heat. Heat until sugar dissolves into water and forms a syrup slightly thicker than water. This typically takes ten minutes. Strain and set aside to cool completely. Reserve half of basil to add to sorbet later if desired. You could also make a simple syrup with lavender for vanilla ice cream, tarragon for chocolate ice cream, etc.
Place the water and raspberries into the bowl of a food processor or blender. Process until the raspberries are very smooth. Strain the raspberry puree through a very fine mesh strainer. Get rid of the solids and seeds in your strainer; all you want is the puree. Put this aside to chill. Once both your simple syrup and puree are completely cool, combine them. Pour them into your ice cream maker. Once your sorbet reaches soft serve consistency, transfer it into an airtight container. If you wish, fold in chopped basil that was reserved from your simple syrup. Freeze for at least two hours before serving.