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Orange Blossom Tangelo Sorbet

Posted on May 3, 2012

Back in Florida, we used to frequent a wonderful local Italian restaurant that served an incredible lemon sorbet stuffed inside of a hollowed out lemon.  Seriously, these lemons must have been on steroids – imagine softball size and you get the picture.

Anyway, a bag of organic tangelos in my fridge, dangerously close to going bad, inspired me to try the same idea using oranges instead of lemons.  I don’t own an ice cream maker, but apparently it’s not critical to this sorbet since Sicilians make it without – they simply chill the mixture until it’s almost frozen, give it a whirl in the mixer, and repeat the process a couple more times until it’s silky smooth.  Time consuming?  Maybe, but very little “active” preparation time, and you can make these several days ahead too!  Definitely a great way to impress your dinner guests…but there’s no reason to tell them how easy these are to make, take a bow and say aw shucks, it was nothin’!

This recipe was inspired by the Sicilian Tangerine Sorbet over at FX Cuisine – I simply substituted tangelos and omitted the lemon juice since they are the tangerine’s tarter cousin.  The twist (no pun intended) in this recipe is a drop of orange blossom water – and I mean just a drop.  If you’re gonna’ have one might as well have two isn’t a good idea with this flavoring – too much and your sorbet will taste more like perfume than orange.

2 cups mineral water, or filtered water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
5 tangelos
1 drop of orange blossom water.

Using a very sharp knife, slice a thin “lid” off of the stem end of your tangelo.  Save the “lids” for serving if you like.

Take a serrated knife, or a spoon, and carefully pry the orange sections away from the skin – once you get the first section out, the rest is a piece of cake.  Place your orange shells in the freezer.  Take the orange sections and press them in a sieve to extract all of the juices.  Discard the pulp.

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, add the water and sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved.  Add a drop of orange blossom water and stir.  Add the tangelo juice and stir.

Pour the mixture into a shallow dish and place in freezer until it is nearly frozen (about 3 hours), then remove and whip the mixture in your stand mixer until smooth.  Repeat the process 2 more times.

Spoon sorbet into your frozen oranges and freeze.  Remove from the freezer about 5 minutes before serving to let it soften just a bit.  Enjoy!

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