I love making homemade fruit sorbets, but I don't love the fact that I have to remember to stick the tub for my ice cream maker into the freezer the day before. I'm more of an instant gratification kind of gal, especially when it comes to summertime desserts.
The problem is that planning ahead isn't exactly my strong suit. And waiting at least 24 hours to satisfy my craving for delicious sorbet? Yeah, not gonna happen either.
The beauty of this recipe is that there's minimal advance planning required. You really just need a bag of frozen strawberries, a tube of Gourmet Garden basil, and a high-powered blender... and voila, a silky-smooth fruity sorbet can be yours in under an hour.
While it might seem like an odd combination, basil and strawberries work beautifully together, with basil's lovely subtle peppery notes playing up the sweetness of the berries.
The secret weapon in this sorbet is a rich simple syrup, which is infused with Gourmet Garden's basil stir-in paste for half an hour, until it takes on a pale green colour and a fragrant basil aroma. So much easier than running out to the store to get a bunch of fresh basil!
Once the basil is strained out, a splash of limoncello and a squirt of corn syrup are added to the mix to keep ice crystals at bay and ensure the sorbet stays scoopable even after a couple of days in the freezer, plus some fresh lemon juice to keep the flavour bright.
Finally, the whole shebang goes into a high-powered blender (think Vitamix or Blendtec, not your grandmother's vintage Osterizer!) with a bag of frozen strawberries, and gets blitzed into gorgeously smooth sorbet in under five minutes flat. You can eat it right away if you're the impatient type, or let it sit in the freezer for a couple of hours to firm up into a properly scoopable consistency.
Either way, what you get is a silky-smooth sorbet that tastes just like the essence of summer, and all in less time than it takes to walk down to the local ice cream parlour. No advance planning required.
Disclosure: This post is part of a series sponsored by Gourmet Garden. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep the Crumb test kitchen stocked! All opinions, as always, are entirely my own.
- ¾ cup water
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 tbsp Gourmet Garden Basil stir-in paste
- 2 tbsp light corn syrup
- 1 tbsp limoncello (or vodka, if you prefer)
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 bag (600g) frozen whole strawberries
- In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, 1 cup water and basil. Simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside to steep for 30 minutes.
- Strain the cooled syrup into a large measuring cup, discarding the solids. Stir in the corn syrup, limoncello and lemon juice.
- Tumble the strawberries into a high-speed blender, then pour over the syrup. Blend at high speed, using the tamper (if you have one) to push the fruit towards the blade.
- Continue blending until the sorbet looks smooth and scoopable, like a thick soft-serve. Resist the urge to overmix, or else you’ll end up with a smoothie instead. Spoon into a container and freeze for 3-4 hours to firm up. (Though, in theory, you can eat it right now... it'll just be really soft and slushy.)
- Spoon the sorbet into a container.
Kelly @ Nosh and Nourish says
I love strawberry and pesto (basil) together --- it's one of my favorite combos! In grilled cheese and even on pizza! So I MUST try this sorbet. ASAP :)
Heather | All Roads Lead to the Kitchen says
I am the same way, I love instant gratification - I MUST try this. Plus, that flavor combo is heaven on a spoon (and the COLOR)!
Angie | Big Bear's Wife says
That color is gorgeous! I can't wait to make this!
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
The color is beautiful and I love the strawberry-basil combo!
[email protected] Mom says
I've never used basil in a dessert, this is a great idea!!!
What a fantastic summer recipe!
Lauren Kelly Nutrition says
I could eat this all summer!
Oh, I can see myself having this on a nice hot day! I love those tubes of herbs. I use the ginger one all the time because I hate peeling and chopping ginger.
The Food Hunter says
I love the flavor combination of this.
Amanda @ The Kitcheneer says
I love strawberry and basil together! I bet this sorbet is delicious with the limoncillo!
Renee - Kudos Kitchen says
I love the combination of strawberry and basil. This much be so light and refreshing!
A Canadian Foodie says
Love series posts - to write, and to read... I have a similar recipe - love the flavour combination. Cannot wait to try yours, sans the corn syrup. I know it is a miracle addition for exactly the reasons you describe, but I have read The Omnivore's Dilemma and after that, there is no going back. :) (30 second in the Thermomix)
Isabelle Boucher says
Thanks for your comment, Valerie. I do want to point out that there's no reason at all to avoid corn syrup.
You see, corn syrup and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) are completely different ingredients, chemically speaking - the former is pure glucose, whereas the latter is part glucose and part fructose. While I do agree that HFCS should be avoided given the implications for our health and the health of the planet, I still believe that regular corn syrup has a place in my kitchen, same as corn starch does.
Obviously, regular corn syrup isn't a health food and should still be consumed in moderation, but health-wise it's no worse for you than regular cane sugar, honey, or maple syrup... and in this case, the added calories of that couple tablespoons are well worth it to get a silky-soft scoopable consistency even after a couple of days in the freezer. :)