Gale Gand is a terrific baker and her latest book, Chocolate & Vanilla, is a double-sided treat of a cookbook that’ll have you flipping the book over-and-over almost as much as you’ll flip over the chocolate and vanilla desserts inside!
Last weekend I was invited to a birthday party, and as I flipped through the pages of her book, I was intrigued by the delicious-looking recipe for White Chocolate Sorbet, which seemed a snap to make (which held a certain attraction too, I’ll admit, during this busy holiday season.)
I had a hunch this would go perfectly well with my Buckwheat Cake, which has the earthy taste of blé noir, but with a surprisingly light, delicate crumb.
Once the last of the buttery cake morsels disappeared off everyone’s plates at the party, all spoons headed towards the remains of the White Chocolate Sorbet left in the container.
And soon it was all gone.
Gale Gand’s White Chocolate Sorbet
About 1 quart 1 quart (1 liter)
Because sorbets are less-rich than ice cream, they’ll become rather firm after spending the night in the freezer. So in addition to the vanilla, I added a shot of eau-de-vie de cacao, a clear distillation of cocoa beans that has the fine fragrance of chocolate in a distinctly hi-test base for flavor as well as texture. I would imagine this would be nice with a soupçon of Chartreuse or even light rum.
And although I did a double-take when I saw the scant amount of sugar in the recipe, any skepticism was dashed when I tasted the finished sorbet, which had just the right bit of sweetness.
1 1/2 cups (375ml) whole milk
2/3 cup (160ml) water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise (or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste)
8 ounces (225g) best-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
1. In a medium saucepan, warm the milk, water, sugar, and vanilla bean until it’s almost to a boil.
2. Remove from heat and add the pieces of white chocolate, whisking until they’re melted. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl set within a larger bowl of ice. (Rinse and air-dry the vanilla bean, and reserve it for another use.)
3.Stir the mixture until cool.
4. Freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Note: If you chill the mixture in the refrigerator for several hours, there’s likely to be a white chocolate disk hardened onto the surface of the mixture when you go to churn it, so it’s recommended to freeze it just after it’s been chilled over the ice bath.
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