Ten Minutes To Sorbet


Company's coming, and you don't have time to prepare dessert. It's a swelteringly hot day, and you yearn for a cool, yet healthful treat. What to do? Take 10 minutes to make a sorbet!

The ingenious recipe, created by Bon Appetit columnist and cookbook author Melanie Barnard, is simply this: You purée a frozen can of fruit with one or two other ingredients. That's it!

Trendy fruit sorbets, served in the fanciest restaurants, are especially refreshing on a warm summer day. Make several different flavors so you can present a rainbow of sorbets elegantly in stemmed glasses with a sprig of mint.

Keep cans of a variety of fruits on hand in your pantry to turn into sorbets. You'll need a minimum of 18 hours freezing time, so it's a good idea to keep a couple of cans in your freezer, ready to purée when the need—or mood—strikes. Just about any fruit will do. If the fruit has seeds, be sure to open the can and pit the fruit before freezing. Fruits packed in heavy syrup make the smoothest texture, but fruits packed in light syrup can be used, according to Barnard.

Why make canned fruit sorbets in the summer when fresh fruits are so widely available? Canned fruits represent the ultimate in convenience. Always ripe and ready, canned fruits require no peeling and, except for plums, no pitting. Flavor and quality are always consistently good. And you never have to worry about dealing with overripe or spoiled fruit.

Canned fruit sorbets are low in calories and contain no fat, making them more healthful than most other desserts. They offer good nutrition, too. Surprising to some consumers, canned fruits and vegetables are as nutritious as their fresh and frozen counterparts, according to a comparative nutritional analysis conducted by the University of Illinois. In fact, some brands of canned apricots for instance, are actually higher in vitamin A content than fresh apricots.

With more than 1,500 different canned foods available, you can count on them for convenient solutions to contemporary mealtime demands.


Peach Sorbet and A Rainbow of Variations

  • 1 can (16 ounces) sliced or halved peaches in heavy syrup
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon

Freeze unopened can of fruit until frozen solid, at least 18 hours. Submerge unopened can in hot water 1 to 2 minutes. Open can and pour syrup into processor bowl. Remove other end of can and turn fruit out onto cutting surface. Cut into 1-inch slices, then cut into chunks and add to processor bowl. Process, pulsing on and off until smooth. Add bourbon and process just to blend thoroughly. Serve immediately, or spoon into bowl, cover and freeze until ready to serve, up to 8 hours.

Makes 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 cups sorbet

Sorbet Flavor Variations

Select from the following combinations to create other flavors of fruit sorbets. Each 15- to 17-ounce can of fruit makes 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 cups of sorbet. Liqueurs and liquors can be omitted, if you wish.

  • 1 can (16 ounces) sliced or halved pears in heavy syrup, plus 2 tablespoons Poire William
  • 1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple in heavy syrup, plus 3 tablespoons dark rum and 2 tablespoons canned cream of coconut
  • 1 can (16 ounces) apricot halves in heavy syrup, plus 2 tablespoons amaretto
  • 1 can (17 ounces) plums in heavy syrup, plus 4 tablespoons creme de cassis and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. (Plums must be opened and pitted, then returned to can or another container before freezing.)
  • 1 can (17 ounces) figs in heavy syrup, plus 2 tablespoons Marsala or sambuca
  • 1 can (16 ounces) grapefruit sections in heavy or light syrup, plus 2 tablespoons dark rum or Triple Sec
  • 1 can (11 ounces) mandarin oranges in heavy or light syrup, plus 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
  • 1 can (15 ounces) blueberries in heavy syrup, plus 2 tablespoons creme de cassis or white creme de menthe and 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Provided by the Steel Packaging Council

This page originally published as a FoodDay article in 1997.

Copyright © 2007, Forkmedia LLC. All rights reserved.

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This page modified January 2007

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