Blood Orange Sherbet

I’ve lost count of how many sherbet recipes I’ve adapted from the original Cooks’ Illustrated recipe. It’s such a great recipe. I hope you enjoyed Friday’s Cantaloupe recipe from Amanda. My husband was drooling over it.

I actually made this sherbet back when blood oranges were first appearing in the stores. I’m finally getting around to posting a bunch of recipes I’ve had sitting in my “draft” folder. So, forgive me for another sherbet post!

Blood oranges are one of the most stunning fruits.

I’ve never bought any before this year. I have no idea why. They’ve been everywhere and now they are disappearing as the season ends.

I have two left in my fridge and I’ve been trying to decide how to use them. I’ve already made a ricotta cheesecake with blood orange curd, sherbet, salad, cookies, etc., etc. I even watched my husband peel one and eat it section by section, the purple juice squirting with each bite.

I’m sad to see them go. I want more of this sherbet. It was so refreshing.

The thing that gave this recipe and extra punch was the zest.

I like to use the technique of rubbing the sugar and zest together until it’s sandy and wet. That’s a Cooks’ Illustrated tip I learned back when I first started making their recipe for Glazed Lemon Cookies (p.s. it’s a how-to post). It really gives you a bang for your buck. I don’t think the recipe for this sherbet actually gives this direction (I can’t find my magazine at the moment). The recipe can be made entirely in a food processor, I just didn’t make it that way for this.

Blood Orange Sherbet
adapted from Cooks’ Illustrated

1 tbsp. grated zest
1 cup (7 oz) sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 cups freshly squeezed blood orange juice (about 8 blood oranges)
4 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
2 tsp. vodka or triple sec
2/3 cup heavy cream

Place the zest and sugar in a large bowl.

Rub the zest and sugar together with your fingers until sandy and wet. Whisk in the salt, orange juice, lemon juice, and vodka. Strain through a fine mesh sieve. (Unless you like the zest to remain in there, but the texture won’t be as smooth.)

Chill the mixture until very cold, about two or three hours. (45 min. in the freezer works, but don’t let it freeze or get icy. It won’t incorporate into the cream.)

In a separate, large mixing bowl, whisk the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Slowly drizzle the orange juice against the side of the bowl while whisking.

Turn ice cream maker on and pour the sherbet base through the feed hole. Churn until thick. Transfer to an airtight container and let harden for a few hours until serving. Keeps well for 1 week. (It will get icier the longer it sits, but the flavor won’t suffer much.)

Note: You don’t have to use the vodka, but the texture won’t be the same and you will have to let the sherbet soften a bit before scooping.

Makes 1 quart.

20 Responses to “Blood Orange Sherbet”

  1. Netts Nook April 27, 2009 at 1:31 pm #

    Your sherbet looks like it came from the store. It sounds so yummy. Great pictures as usual.

  2. Norah April 27, 2009 at 2:51 pm #

    I love blood oranges. I can’t wait till next season to give this a try.

  3. {natalie} April 27, 2009 at 3:01 pm #

    oh man that looks delicious! i hope i can still find some blood oranges in the store.

  4. Ingrid April 27, 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    MMMMmmm, I love coming by here. You pass along tons of info with out making me feel like a big dummy because I didn’t know it already. I haven’t made sherbet YET but will add it to my list of “must tries”!

    I’ve got my coconut mixture in chillin’ in the fridge. Mmmmm! I was thinking of adding some chocolate covered almonds to it when it’s almost done churning.

    Btw, thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment! :)

  5. Lovely Lacey April 27, 2009 at 5:34 pm #

    Oh wow that looks great!

  6. The Food Librarian April 27, 2009 at 5:52 pm #

    Just such a lovely color!

  7. Caroline April 27, 2009 at 6:33 pm #

    What a great idea to make sherbet, I have blood oranges right now begging me to do something with ‘em. I’m sure my boys and I would love this!

  8. vibi April 27, 2009 at 9:43 pm #

    What a beautiful almost victorian colour!
    I’ve been meaning to try David Lebovitz’s blood orange sorbet, but now that I see yours… I’m tempted to change my mind!

    Beautiful, Lindsey!

  9. Carrian April 27, 2009 at 10:26 pm #

    We actually made some last month too!

  10. april~living the sweet life April 27, 2009 at 11:37 pm #

    I love them all. Another great idea. I think I need to have a party themed around Sherbet & Sorbet. I will be sure to invite you.

  11. Leslie April 28, 2009 at 2:59 am #

    oh we love blood oranges, my husband even bought a blood orange tree! we’re totally making this come summer. thanks!

  12. pinkstripes April 28, 2009 at 3:07 am #

    Beautiful! I love the color. Blood orange sherbet sounds delicious.

  13. Marie April 28, 2009 at 7:16 am #

    You must get tired of hearing this Lindsey, but that looks wonderfully delicious!! I really must make some sherbet one day soon. You can’t really buy it over here and I do miss it. Blood orange sherbet sounds and looks wonderful!

  14. kamailesfood April 29, 2009 at 4:18 am #

    I was introduced to blood oranges by my US History teacher in high school. He had a tree in his yard and he would bring them to school for us to try. Blood oranges in sherbet form sounds heavenly.

  15. steph- whisk/spoon April 29, 2009 at 12:23 pm #

    gorgeous! i feel like i can taste it!

  16. sara May 7, 2009 at 5:43 am #

    S E R I O U S L Y.

    picking my jaw up off the floor…

    you are amazing. Congrats on the new baby -and hope everyone gets healthy soon -especially the MAMA!

  17. Robin August 1, 2009 at 9:58 pm #

    I just finished mixing the ingredients together for this, and I sneaked a little taste of the mix and it is DELICIOUS! I think this will be the best ice cream I’ve made to date!

  18. Have-a-Clue May 14, 2010 at 1:45 am #

    Can I ask which Cook’s Illustrated Recipe (when)? It must be one I missed and I’d like to go back and look. Thanks!

  19. Lindsey Johnson May 14, 2010 at 4:54 am #

    Have-a-Clue, I’ll have to go dig it out and check. I’m sorry I can’t remember off-hand. I’ll get to it tomorrow. But I’m sure it was back in 2003 or 2004.


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