Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pear and Red Wine Sorbet

This little experiment was born out of an abundance of Jones Orchard Keiffir pears, a magnum of Italian red wine, and access to an ice-cream maker. And now I'm pretty sure I need one of those little contraptions in my life. Which would, of course, be dangerous for the diet, but also really fun. Since making this sorbet, I also have made avocado ice cream, which was a little strange to eat, like frozen guacamole.

I made this for a Halloween party, and it went over really well. Of course, that could have also just been the house punch talking.

Pear and Red Wine Sorbet
from this recipe in the New York Times

2 1/2 lbs ripe pears (about 4 large)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups red wine
1 1/2 cups water
1 2- or 3-inch cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch of freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Peel, core, and quarter the pears. Place them in a medium saucepan with the sugar, red wine, water, cinnamon stick, and vanilla. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until pears are soft and translucent (about 20-30 minutes). Add the pepper.

Using tongs, remove the pears to a bowl. Remove the cinnamon stick from the poaching liquid, and discard. Turn up the heat, and reduce until the mixture has the consistency of thin syrup. (This may be unnecessary depending on how long you cooked the pears and how juicy they were.)

Place the pears, in batches, in a food processor (or all at once, if you have a big food processor. I have a Cuisinart Mini-Prep, so I did this in batches). Puree until smooth. Slowly add the poaching liquid and lemon juice and blend together. Transfer to a bowl, and chill.

Freeze according to the instructions of your ice cream maker. Transfer to a chilled container and freeze at least two hours before serving.

The cinnamon flavor of this is pronounced and very tasty.

Other fall delights: roasted acorn squash from Willow Oaks Farm stuffed with quinoa and sauteed onions, plus some cinnamon for spice. Also more buttered cabbage, because, dude, it is good.

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