Preferably, I should have posted this recipe a few weeks ago, when rhubarb was still in season and widely available. But hey, I’m not perfect, and while the timing of this post may be a bit off, the flavor of this delicious rhubarb sorbet definitely isn’t! In fact, I made several batches of rhubarb sorbet with ginger last month to get the flavor just right, and this version turned out to be my absolute favorite!
This recipe was inspired by a newspaper clipping. While I have to admit that I don’t have a newspaper subscription myself – because I still refuse to cancel my weekly ‘Donald Duck’ magazine -, my mom receives a newspaper daily and besides reading the news – obviously – she always cuts out interesting recipes for me to try. This recipe was inspired by one of those recipes, although I’ve adapted it dramatically.
While the original recipe contained a 3-cm piece (over an inch) of fresh ginger and 50ml (almost ¼ cup!) of ginger syrup, that much ginger proved to be too much for me, my mom and the Rocking Rebel. Besides, we thought that the intense flavor of the ginger completely drowned out the delicate flavor of the rhubarb. So I decreased the amount of ginger to only 5ml (1 teaspoon!) of ginger syrup. Just enough to taste it. Just enough to make it interesting and to complement the flavor of the rhubarb.
It was definitely worth some experimenting!
On another note, in my post about Rhubarb and Vanilla Jam, I mentioned that the color of the rhubarb has a considerable effect on the color of the finished product. Especially if you’re making jam, compote, ice cream or sorbet. So keep that in mind if you want your sorbet to have a particular color. Me, I’d like rhubarb sorbet to look red.
For this sorbet, I used up left over rhubarb stalks that I had frozen a couple of weeks ago. And yes, you can freeze rhubarb. Very easily! Just trim it, wash it, dry it, half the stalks so they’ll fit in your freezer and freeze! As it happened, I had a number of different rhubarb varieties in my freezer, ranging from very red to very green. So before I started I was already aware that the color of the cooked sorbet mixture probably wasn’t going to turn out red.
But there’s always red food coloring right?
You don’t have to use it, of course. Only if you’re like me and want your sorbet to be red…
Anyway, chop the rhubarb of many different colors into small pieces and throw them all in a medium-sized pan. Then add some sugar and water.
Don’t chopped rhubarb pieces look gorgeous?
Stir to dissolve the sugar…
… then cover with a lid, bring to a boil and leave to cook over low heat until it softens.
After 15 minutes, the rhubarb will have become considerably less gorgeous than the uncooked stuff.
See? Not very attractive, right? But nothing a few drops of red food coloring won’t solve!
Oh, and don’t forget to add the ginger syrup at this point. Just a touch of ginger really takes the rhubarb flavor to a whole new level of deliciousness!
By the way, it looks a lot better red, doesn’t it? It almost looks like sorbet already… It’s not though. It still has some churning to do.
At the beginning of summer I bought myself a very cheap ice cream maker. Instead of freezing the ice cream electrically, it comes with a cooling disk you need to put in your freezer the day before you intend to make ice cream. But before you run out to the store, check how cold your freezer will go, as the cooling disk needs to be at least -18°C (0°F), otherwise it won’t be able to freeze your ice cream mixture.
I found that out the hard way, after messing up two batches of ice cream mixture…
But hey, in the end I figured it out, turned down the temperature of my fridge, and since then I have been making beautiful ice cream and sorbets!
Pretty, right? You’d almost think I was a professional ice cream maker!
Serve with crispy Chattyheads!
- 500g (or 1 pound + 1 ounce) cleaned and trimmed rhubarb, preferably red rhubarb
- 150g (or ¾ cup) granulated sugar
- 100ml (or ⅓ cup + 4 teaspoons) water
- ½ teaspoon ginger syrup
- 50ml (or 3 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon) water
- a few drops of red food coloring (optional)
- Start by chopping the rhubarb into little pieces. Combine with the sugar and 100ml (or ⅓ cup + 4 teaspoons) of water in a medium-sized pan. Heat gently, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
- Once the sugar has dissolved, bring to a boil. Leave to simmer gently, uncovered, over low heat for 15 minutes, then take the rhubarb mixture off the heat and carefully pour it in a heatproof bowl. Leave to cool to room temperature.
- Once the mixture has cooled, add another 50ml of water, the ginger syrup and a few drops of the food coloring (if desired). Using a stick blender, blitz the mixture to a smooth puree.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill the mixture in the fridge for 1 hour. Once chilled, churn the mixture in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer to a freeze-proof container, cover with a lid, and place in the freezer for at least 3 hours or until ready to serve.
- Twenty minutes before serving, take the rhubarb sorbet out of the freezer and allow to soften for twenty minutes in the fridge or on the countertop.