Friday, March 20, 2009
Key Lime Sherbet - A Minimalists Dessert
If you share my love for citrus desserts I suspect you're ready for this tart, key lime sherbet. It's Zen-like in its simplicity and can be made without an ice cream or sherbet maker. The sherbet is easy to make, but do plan time for multiple freezings and sear the word cold into your brain. Bowls and beaters must be icy cold as you work and you'll find it's best to work as quickly as you can. The number of key limes you'll use will vary; I needed 20 key limes to make 2/3 cup of juice. If key limes aren't available, large Persian limes - about 3 of them - may be substituted. This is a wonderful way for the health conscious to end a meal. I like to frost the glasses in which I serve the sherbet. It's not necessary but it looks really nice and it makes for a great grand finale.
Key Lime Sherbet
3 cups water
1-1/4 cups sugar, divided use
3/4 cup light corn syrup
2/3 cup key lime juice, strained
2 to 3 drops green food coloring (optional)
2 egg whites
1) Place water, 1 cup sugar and corn syrup in a 2-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil, over high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat; continue to boil for 5 minutes. Set aside; cool to room temperature.
2) Stir in lime juice and food coloring, if using. Pour into a shallow metal pan. Place pan in the freezer and freeze until solid throughout. Place bowl and beaters of an electric mixer in the freezer as well.
3) Remove pan from freezer. Quickly break up lime mixture with a wooden spoon; turn into frozen mixer bowl. Beat with frozen beaters at low speed, just until mixture is lump free. Remove bowl containing lime mixture from stand and transfer immediately to the freezer. Return beaters to freezer as well. Refreeze.
4) When the mixture is refrozen, place egg whites in a small mixing bowl. Add a pinch of salt; beat until slightly thickened. Add reserved 1/4 cup sugar and beat until egg whites hold their shape. Set aside.
5) Remove lime mixture from freezer, Break up with a wooden spoon. Beat with chilled beaters until just smooth. With mixer set to low speed, beat in egg whites only until just incorporated. Immediately return bowl to freezer. Refreeze, folding gently from bottom to top, two or three times during freezing process. Serve firm. Yield: 6 cups.