If there is one welcome sign that summer is getting closer to its end, it’s the abundance of ripening blackberries in the hedgerows. It has become a family tradition to go out and forage, and this year we decided to make something new with our bumper crop.
We’ve owned an ice cream maker for a few years, but it stayed unloved in its box. It was about time it had some use. On Day 34 of #100DaysNoTV we made fresh blackberry sorbet.
While there isn’t a huge amount of effort required to make the sorbet, you need to allow for a few hours in order to let it chill and then freeze. You can make it with or without an ice cream maker; it is more labour intensive without.
After researching recipes on the internet (there are many, MANY versions, some using raw egg – bleurgh!) we came up with our version below.
500g fresh blackberries
Juice of 1 orange
The beauty of sorbet recipes is that you can adapt the ingredients to suit your taste, and to what you have available at the time. There are no hard & fast rules. So, there’s your excuse to try out as many variations as you want! 🙂
Shallow container (preferably stainless steel – plastic is fine too)
Ice cream maker (optional)
- Rinse the blackberries and purée them in a food processor with half the water (100ml).
- Add the sugar, the remaining water and the orange juice to a large saucepan.
- Line a sieve with the muslin cloth, place over the saucepan and carefully pour the puréed blackberries through the sieve to capture the pips.
Clean the muslin as soon as possible, and expect some staining!
- Combine the sieved blackberry juice with the other ingredients, bring to the boil and then simmer, stirring constantly, until the sugar has fully dissolved.
- Transfer to a shallow container and refrigerate until fully chilled.
A stainless steel container will speed up the process.
- When chilled, pour the mixture into your ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for sorbet.
See ‘Variations’ below if you don’t have an ice cream maker.
- Once complete, transfer the sorbet to a chilled container, cover with cling film and place in the freezer.
A shallow container will allow the ice crystals to form more uniformly.
Give it a couple of hours in the freezer before serving. It’s ready when you can scoop out a nice ball of sorbet with a dessertspoon. If it’s too hard, pop it in the fridge for a short while to soften.
ice cream maker v manual labour
No ice cream maker? No worries! You can still make this sorbet – you just need a bit more time on your hands.
After step 5 above, transfer your container to the freezer and leave for about an hour. Once the mixture starts to form an icy crust, remove from the freezer and break up the larger ice crystals. You can do this gently in a food processor. Once the mixture has a slushy consistency, place back in the container and refreeze. Be prepared to follow this process at least one more time.
You will find that in a shallow container the sorbet will freeze more evenly, and therefore the process to a nice smooth sorbet will be quicker than in a deep container. The advantage of the ice cream maker is that it breaks up the crystals for you. But, at least if you do it manually, you can enjoy the end result knowing you’ve really deserved it! 🙂
orange v lemon
You may like to use lemon juice instead of orange juice. It may need a touch more sugar if you use lemon to balance out the acidity.
fresh v frozen
Frozen blackberries can be used, and would be the only option at certain times of the year. If you use frozen, make sure they’re fully thawed before puréeing.
Rob and I really enjoyed making this sorbet. It’s simple & delicious. We’ve enjoyed inventing some weird & wonderful flavours to try out – watch this space! 🙂
Bye for now!