I often find myself making strange concoctions for late night desserts. I just get that craving for a little something sweet after dinner and find myself rummaging around the cabinets and freezer to see what I can whip up.
Sometimes I end up with weird combinations involving elderly marshmallows and peanut butter that do not need to be repeated, but sometimes, like with this mango sorbet, I get a real winner.
Several months ago, I had some mangoes hanging around that were excess from a big project. I was headed out of town and didn’t think they’d last till I got back, so rather than let them commit juicy mango suicide on my counter, I skinned them and sliced them and popped them into a container in the freezer. And there they sat…for months…with no particular plan for how they’d be used.
Then one night inspiration hit. I opened the container of frozen mangoes and discovered that even completely frozen they weren’t quite hard. The texture reminded me of sorbet…so I decided that sorbet is what they would become.
If you have a food processor, this is about as easy as can be. I suspect a blender would work too, but I haven’t tested that one. It works wonderfully with mangoes, and I suspect any other dense “silky” fruit would work too. Peaches, apricots, nectarines almost definitely. Ripe papaya too probably. But anything crunchy (apple, pear) or with more juice than “stuff” (watermelon, citrus) probably wouldn’t work out. They’d freeze too hard or have a mealy texture. But let me know if you try it since I might be wrong.
- Frozen Mango chunks (any amount that will fit in your food processor)
- Simple Syrup (instructions below. Use to taste)
- 1-2 Tbsp Booze ( I used Rum. anything that sounds tasty with mango would work. If you aren’t a drinker you could add a big splash of vanilla extract. Or just omit.)
Place the mango chunks in your food processor (FP) and pulse a couple of times to start breaking them up.
Add the booze and then pulse a few more times. Open up the FP and give everything a stir to help it along.
Turn the FP back on and while it is running pour in some simple syrup, starting with just a couple of tablespoons. Stop and taste the (probably still chunky) fruit and decide how much more sugar it needs to bring out the flavor. Keep adding syrup, with the FP running, until it reaches your desired sweetness. For about 5 cups of mango, I think I used about 1/2 cup syrup.
Keep whirring away in the FP till it reaches a smooth consistency, stirring and scraping down the sides occasionally if needed. Once it’s nice and silky smooth, put it into an airtight container and freeze to firm up (at least an hour). Scoop and serve!
Mine kept quite nicely without too much ice crystal growth for 2 weeks in a cheapo gladware container on the freezer door. In a truly airtight container, deep in the freezer where the temp holds steadier it would probably last even longer.
Handy to have around for cocktails, homemade lemonade or sweet tea or anything else cold that you might want to add sugar to.
- 1 cup Water
- 1 cup Sugar
Combine in a medium saucepan and simmer over medium low heat, stirring frequently until the sugar dissolves. Immediately remove from heat and allow to cool a bit before pouring into a bottle or jar for storage/use.
If you wanted to get fancy you can infuse it with all sorts of flavors by just dropping something into the sauce pan while it heats. Herbs, citrus peel, a chunk of used vanilla bean….be creative.