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September 2, 2013
A Quick Recipe: Lime Sorbet
This is not a complicated thing to make, but it's terrific. My family and I polished off a large batch of it last night - it's still warm and humid enough around here to make it an excellent dessert. The only thing you need is some sort of stirring ice-cream freezer - we have one of those where you put the cylinder in the freezer for a day, and then turn a hand crank. But anything will work, as long as it's cold enough and allows you to keep mixing.
The ingredient list is short. Fresh lime juice really is essential, though, although if you have lemons around, lemon sorbet is (naturally) the same recipe, and is also excellent.
1 cup (250 mL) fresh-squeezed lime juice
1.5 cups granulated white sugar (300 grams)
Enough water to take the volume to 4 cups (1 liter)
Squeeze the lime juice. If you want a really smooth texture in the finished product, you can strain the pulp out, but I don't bother. Add the sugar, adjust to the final volume with water, and stir to dissolve. The sorbet will form more quickly, of course, if you chill this mixture beforehand. Add this solution to the ice-cream maker, and stir steadily until the mixture is very thick. Constant stirring will keep the sides from icing up, and make the finished product more homogeneous. I've found that you need to keep freezing things past when you think it looks ready, as the sorbet gets looser once it's being dished out. You'll also probably need to stir it again during that process; some syrup tends to pool up in it as it stands.
If you like the flavor of lemon or lime, this is probably going to be the best sorbet you've ever tasted. There's nothing like the fresh juice, and this will give you a cold, concentrated blast of it. These proportions are a little more sour than the ones given by Harold McGee for a "sweet fruit ice" in his book The Curious Cook, so if you find this a bit acidic, you can add four tablespoons more sugar (50g) to the mix next time. McGee's book has a chapter which includes tested recipes for doing this sort of thing with a huge variety of fruits, so it's worth seeking out if you find that this is your favorite route for self-administering vitamin C.
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