Looking for a delightful and refreshing treat? You’re in for a treat with this homemade plum sorbet recipe. Whether you’re a kitchen newbie or a seasoned pro, this simple yet scrumptious recipe will have you dishing out a burst of fruity goodness in no time.
This plum sorbet recipe will not only help you beat the heat, but also use those ripe plums in a different way. Using a few simple kitchen tools like an ice cream maker and a blender, you’ll create a silky smooth sorbet that captures the essence of summer.
You don’t need an ice cream maker to make this easy dessert; just a blender or food processor and freezer would do. However, an ice cream machine does the trick if you prefer a smooth sorbet.
Homemade Sorbet is fruit puree mixed with sugar and water or fruit juice mixed with sugar, without eggs, milk, or cream. It can contain a lot of sugar if you get it in ice cream shops or grocery stores, but when you make it at home, you can control the amount of sugar for a healthier version.
Ripe Plums and Roasted Plums: The foundation of a fantastic plum sorbet lies in the quality of your plums. Seek out the juiciest, ripest fresh plums you can find.
Sugar and Corn Syrup: I now always use a mix of granulated sugar and corn syrup (golden syrup in the UK), but you can use just sugar. I learned that tip from David Lebovitz and it helps from making my sorbet. You can play around with the right amount of sugar but remember you need it to stop the sorbet from freezing into a block!
Water: Use a little water to make the fruit puree.
Fresh Lemon juice: A few drops add that special zing.
Plum Brandy or Cherry Liqueur: I think adding a little spirit gives the whole thing a depth of flavor that you don’t get otherwise, but of course, only add it if you wish.
Spices: Cinnamon and star anise add a nice touch, but use sparingly as you don’t want to overwhelm the pure plum taste – this is optional!
It only takes a few simple steps for this great recipe:
Cook the fruit
Wash the plums thoroughly under running water. Seeds and slice them. core them and then slice them into chunks.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the plums and water (cinnamon stick and star anise go in now as well). Allow the mixture to simmer gently, letting the flavors meld and the plums soften.
Once the plums are tender and the flavors are well combined, remove the saucepan from the heat. (Fish out the cinnamon stick and star anise.)
Make the puree
Transfer the cooled mixture to a food processor and puree. Then transfer to the pan again and add the sugar and the corn syrup. Heat it until the sugar is dissolved and blend until dissolved. Then add the liquor if you are using.
If you prefer a silkier texture, strain the purée to remove any fibrous bits. This step is optional, as some enjoy the slight texture from the fruit.
Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. This step is crucial to prevent ice crystals from forming later in the freezing process.
Freeze (skip this step if you’re using an ice cream maker)
Transfer this pureed sorbet mixture into a freezer-safe container or a shallow loaf pan (and cover tightly with plastic wrap) and place it in the freezer for about 4 hours.
After it’s completely frozen, keep the sorbet at room temperature to partially thaw it. Transfer it to the food processor for a minute or two (for a light, fluffy texture). Transfer the sorbet back into its container and refreeze for at least 3 hours.
Chill and transfer to the ice cream maker (skip this step if you’re not using an ice cream maker)
Place the pureed mixture into a large bowl in the refrigerator until it is chilled. Transfer the mixture to the chilled container of your ice-cream maker and make the sorbet as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
You can start eating your sorbet immediately or keep it in the freezer for a couple of hours to firm it up.
- Ice Cream Maker: An ice cream maker is an essential tool for creating smooth and creamy sorbets. It helps churn the sorbet mixture while incorporating air, resulting in a velvety texture.
- Food Processor or Blender: A food processor or blender is useful for puréeing the plums and other ingredients. It ensures a consistent texture and helps blend the flavors seamlessly.
- Large Saucepan: You’ll need a large saucepan to cook the plum mixture and allow the flavors to develop. A larger surface area also ensures even heating and faster cooking.
- Freezer-Safe Container: An airtight freezer-safe container is essential for storing your plum sorbet during the freezing process. It prevents the sorbet from developing freezer burn and maintains its freshness.
- Strainer: If you prefer a smoother texture, a fine-mesh strainer is useful for removing any fibrous bits from the plum purée.
- Citrus Juicers: Lemon and lime juice are essential for balancing the flavors and adding a zesty kick. Citrus juicers make extracting the juice a breeze.
- Spice Infuser or Cheesecloth: If using spices like cinnamon sticks or star anise, a spice infuser or cheesecloth can help infuse the flavors without leaving any unwanted residue in the sorbet.
The Ice Cream maker to use!
You have to have an ice cream maker if you want to make ice cream or sorbet! I started making it using the Cuisinart ICE-100 Compressor Ice Cream and Gelato.
There is no faffing around with bowls in the freezer. When you are ready for ice cream, it’s ready. Just turn on the Cuisinart ice cream maker and go. In about 40 minutes, you have ice cream that you can eat right then, or you can put it in the freezer to harden up a bit more. Once done in, you’ll have about 1 litre of ice cream ready to devour!
Here are some valuable tips to help you make the perfect sorbet that you can relish with those around you:
- When tasting the sorbet after freezing, add some sugar syrup if there’s too little sugar or add some water if there’s too much sugar, and refreeze the sorbet.
- Use any citrus juice of your preference – lemon, lime, or orange are all great choices.
- The sorbet will be ready to serve about 4-6 hours after placing it in the freezer the first time. If you’re freezing it for longer, keep it at room temperature for about 10 minutes to soften it sufficiently for scooping.
Although a simple plum sorbet tastes great, you can add more flavors to make it extra special. Here are a few that go well with plum:
- Spiced Plum Sorbet: Infuse your plum sorbet with warm and aromatic spices like cinnamon, star anise, and a hint of cardamom. Simmer these spices with the plum mixture and strain before freezing to create a delightful spiced twist on the classic.
- Plum-Basil Sorbet: Combine the sweet juiciness of plums with the herbaceous freshness of basil. Blend fresh basil leaves into the plum mixture before freezing to create a vibrant and unique flavor profile.
- Plum-Ginger Sorbet: Add a zing of ginger to your plum sorbet by incorporating freshly grated ginger during the simmering process. Strain out the ginger before freezing to achieve a harmonious balance between sweetness and spice.
- Plum-Rosemary Sorbet: Blend the earthy and piney notes of rosemary with the sweetness of plums. Infuse the plum mixture with a sprig of fresh rosemary during cooking, then strain it out before freezing for a sophisticated herbal undertone.
- Plum-Wine Sorbet: Elevate your plum sorbet with a splash of red wine. Simmer the plums with a bit of red wine until they break down, and then blend and freeze. The wine adds depth and complexity to the sorbet’s flavor.
Remember that when experimenting with variations, it’s a good idea to start with small quantities to ensure the flavors complement each other. Whether you’re drawn to the warmth of spices, the freshness of herbs, or the allure of wine, these variations will take your plum sorbet experience to the next level. Enjoy the creative process and treat your taste buds to a delightful array of flavors!
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does sorbet last in the freezer?
If you store your sorbet in an airtight container or a properly covered container, it can last for up to a month in the freezer. And while it’s still safe to eat the sorbet beyond that, it starts becoming overly icy. With each scoop, you’re bound to get more ice crystals in your mouth.
Is plum sorbet vegan?
Yes, plum sorbet is vegan as it does not contain any animal products.
Is plum sorbet gluten-free?
Yes, plum sorbet is gluten-free as it does not contain any wheat or gluten-containing ingredients.
Can I use any type of plum for making sorbet?
Yes, you can use a variety of plum types for making sorbet. From sweet to tart, different plum varieties will result in varying flavors and sweetness levels in your sorbet. Experiment with different types to find your favorite.
Can I use frozen plums instead of fresh ones?
Yes, you can use frozen plums to make sorbet. Frozen plums can be especially convenient when fresh ones are out of season. Just ensure they are thawed before using, and you might need to adjust the cooking time slightly
Can I use honey or maple syrup as a sweetener?
Yes, you can use alternative sweeteners like honey or maple syrup. However, these might affect the texture and flavor of the sorbet slightly, so experimentation is key.
The cherry on top
Sorbets are a great alternative to ice cream during the blazing hot summer days. With the many benefits of plum, like a great Vitamin C source, low in sugar and calories, and a great source of folate and fiber, there’s all the more reason to try out this plum sorbet recipe.
Try a few of these other sorbets:
You can also try different sorbet recipes using other fruits instead of plums. Strawberry, mango, and lime are refreshing summer fruits and make great sorbets with or without an ice cream maker. Take it up a notch and try fruit combinations!
Here’s the Plum Sorbet recipe!
- 1½ lbs plums pitted and sliced
- ¼ cup water
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 2 tbsp light corn syrup or golden syrup
- 1 tsp cherry liqueur
- a few drops of lemon juice
- Put the sliced plums and water into a saucepan over medium heat and cook, covered, until the plums are tender, stirring occasionally! This takes about 10 minutes.
- Pour plums with the liquid into a blender and puree until smooth
- Add the sugar and corn syrup and stir. (If not still hot and the sugar doesn't dissolve, then just warm it slightly on the stove and stir until dissolved.)
- Add the cherry liqueur and the drops of lemon and then let cool to room temperature
- Transfer to a bowl and chill in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
- When ready, take it out of the fridge and make it in an ice cream maker according to manufacture's instructions.
- Serve immediately or put in freezer to chill.