Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Ice Cream Social?

Kelly's homemade plum port sorbet: 07/09/09

I was incredibly excited to see that Savor the Thyme was co-hosting an "Ice Cream Social" with Tangled Noodle and ScottySnacks in celebration of National Ice Cream Month. What better time is there to show off a discovery!? Plus, being incredibly in love with ice cream doesn't hurt my enthusiasm any ;)

As a wannabe-mad-scientist, I spend a lot of time in my kitchen trying to concoct the perfect ice creams and sorbets. I take basic recipes, taste them, and take notes about what I would want to be different. Afterward, I go through my books to figure out what alters the chemistry of these tasty treats. I brainstorm how I might be able to use this information to manipulate the original recipe, and try again. Most have come out pretty decent, but it wasn't until I conducted my "plum experiment" that I created a frozen explosion. I had decided to make plum ice cream and plum sorbet as a test of which product would taste better. Although the "winner" of the experiment (sorbet) was not all that surprising, the level to which it surpassed it's creamy competitor was astounding.

In the beginning of my experiment, I wasn't sure how plum skins might taste so I cooked them separately from the rest of the fruit. I knew I would at least use some of them (for color), but wanted to be sure that they wouldn't provide any flavor or textural issues. In fact it was quite the opposite. Aside from giving the sorbet a gorgeous deep red color, the skins provided it with a much more intense and delicious flavor. In addition, the port wine not only complimented the plum very well, it also gave the sorbet a wonderful texture.

I'm really proud of how this recipe turned out.

3.75# ripe plums- pit removed
1 c. water
1/3 c. raw sugar
10 T agave nectar
3 T port wine

To see how to make this sorbet step-by-step view the video below. It can also be found on Youtube.

Dramatic Spoonful from Kelly Arsenault on Vimeo.

To some it may seem like a very basic recipe that could be found in any book, but I approached this specific experiment with no recipe at all. I feel that, going in blind, this was a tremendous success in my overall development as a mad scientist.


  1. Nicely done. Love the ending :-)

  2. So impressed by the use of agave nectar, plums AND port wine--you go girl!!!