White Chocolate Sorbet (with a splash of amarula liqueur)

11 Jul

It can be tricky to keep chocolate around during the summer heat. It might melt and goop up, or it might bloom to an unappetizing texture and taste.

Cold, silky, frozen chocolate sorbet, on the other hand, is where the party’s at. This white chocolate sorbet is made with good-quality white chocolate, whole milk, just 1 tablespoon of sugar, a splash of vanilla, and a little shot of liqueur.

No egg yolks, no cream, and just a touch of sugar. After all, while we want to satisfy our sweet tooth, we don’t want to totally bust our belts…(never-mind that white chocolate is mostly made of cocoa fat).

I know there is a band of white-chocolate haters out there. If you’re not into it, maybe I can convince you to try this Bittersweet Chocolate Sorbet. It might just blow your mind.

Since the majority of the sorbet’s flavor will come from the white chocolate, I would splurge and buy a hunk of high quality stuff. Most gourmet markets will carry the good stuff. I purchased my chocolate at Westside Market in NYC, but I know that Whole Foods carries good brands, too. I used Callebaut chocolate (Valrhona is another popular brand). Oh, and maybe it is the professional/restaurant pastry-mind in me, but we always buy a hunk and chop the chocolate ourselves (…but hey,don’t sweat it, I won’t tell anyone if you buy chips, no big deal, it all gets melted anyway).

I added slightly less than a shot of amarula to the sorbet base.  Amarula is a South African cream liqueur that (as per wikipedia, and I agree) tastes like a slightly fruity caramel. I love to drink amarula with (preferably crushed) ice and some coffee. Oh baby! You can recognize the bottle easily because of the big elephant on it.

In addition to the subtle flavor it lends to the sorbet, the alcohol is used for texture. Sorbet is not as rich as ice cream, and it can become quite firm after spending a night in the freezer. Alcohol does not freeze, so it will keep the texture of the sorbet nice and soft. David Lebovitz offers some helpful tips on his blog on how to keep homemade ice cream soft. And instead of amarula, you could use a light rum or a splash of amaretto

White Chocolate Sorbet (with amarula liqueur)

from David Lebovitz, originally from Gale Gand

makes slightly less than 1 quart

1 1/2 cups (375 ml) whole milk

2/3 cup (160 ml) water

1 tablespoon sugar

2-3 tablespoons amarula liqueur (a little less than 1 shot)

1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise (or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract)

8 ounces (225 gr) best-quality white chocolate (I used Callebaut brand), finely chopped

1. In a medium saucepan, warm the milk, water, sugar, vanilla, and amarula until it’s almost to a boil.

2. Remove from heat and add the pieces of white chocolate, whisking until they’re melted. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl set within a larger bowl of ice water. (If using a vanilla bean, rinse and air-dry it, and reserve it for another use.)

3. Stir the mixture until cool.

4. Freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

(Note: If you chill the mixture in the refrigerator for several hours, there’s likely to be a white chocolate disk hardened onto the surface of the mixture when you go to churn it, so it’s recommended to freeze it just after it’s been chilled over the ice bath.)

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