A few weeks ago a made a slew of ice pops from large amounts of fruit I’d stockpiled in my freezers. They were great: simple to make, easy to grab and really delicious. I gave most of them to a friend whose 13-year-old triplet nephews were about to descend upon her for a summer vacation. She needed them more than I, for distractions and rewards if nothing else. Plus she gave me a pineapple in return. Fair trade. The hit of the lot were the pina colada pops I whipped up on the fly and with a pineapple in hand, I decided to make some more. Sort of.
This time, rather than funneling the mixture into the plastic ice pop sleeves; I opted to make a sorbet. Or a sherbet. It’s a little confusing trying to decipher the difference between the two. I cannot remember the last time I had pineapple sherbet. The ‘70’s? Seems it was always floating in a punchbowl when I was a kid, all those sherbet punches at your mom’s bunko games and Tupperware parties. Wow, punchbowl drinks are something you don’t see much anymore. It almost makes me want to run to the store right now and buy a box (Yes! A box!) of pineapple sherbet.
In fact, earlier this week I had a delightful treat in this vein. I had a rainbow sherbet float but instead of soda, the restaurant used a sparkling rosé. It was fantastic. Bright, refreshing and completely unexpected, plus bonus points for booze. A new way to enjoy #roséallday and I love it.
So what’s the difference between a sherbet and a sorbet? In general, sherbets are fruit based and contain a little dairy or other fat giving it a common link to ice cream. Sorbets are also generally fruit based but are dairy free. To complicate matters, sorbets are occasionally made with non-fruit ingredients, like chocolate. Confusing, right? Anyway, I took a pineapple sorbet recipe, added some coconut milk and figured that the added fat or at the very least the creaminess it added qualified as a sherbet, so I’m calling it a sherbet. With a shot of dark rum and some lime juice, I don’t really care what category it falls. What I do care is that it tastes really good on an hot, incredibly hot day. And it does.
You also can’t have a discussion about sherbet without discussing the lingering question: sherbet or sherbert. For the majority of my childhood, I thought it was “sherbert”. Turns out, there’s no Bert in sherbet. Every time I type it, it seems strange but that’s how it is. Sherbet. Sherbet. Sherbet. Beetlejuice.
STRESS THERAPY BAKING FACTOR: COOL SMILES. This is happiness in a bowl. Two spoonfuls in and the tension released from my shoulders. Cool, sweet-tart pineapple with the smooth, creamy addition of coconut and a slight hit of rum. It tastes like vacation and I love it. Images of pool side bars with endless boozy slushy machines immediately comes to mind. A champagne float, as mentioned above, would be marvelous. I can’t wait to break this out over the holiday weekend.
Other pineapple and coconut recipes: Summer Fruit Ice Pops, Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Slow Roasted Spiced Pineapple, Spicy Pineapple Paletas, Yunnan Pineapple & Tomato Salad, Coconut Pound Cake, Coconut Tres Leches Ice Cream, Coconut Layer Cake
Seven years ago: At the Market
Six years ago: Big American Flag Cake (perfect for your July 4th parties!)
Five years ago: Sweet & Spicy Beer Mustard
Four years ago: Strawberry Hibiscus Popsicles
Three years ago: BBQ Baked Beans
Two years ago: Guinness Crème Anglaise
Last year: Onion Rye Berry Bread
PINA COLADA SHERBET
makes 1 quart
here’s the thing: a typical can of coconut milk is 13.5 ounces. The recipe calls for 12 ounces. Do what you gotta do.
½ cup sugar
½ cup water
1 whole pineapple, cored, trimmed, chopped
1 ½ cups unsweetened coconut milk
2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 Tablespoons dark rum
pinch of kosher salt
- In a small saucepan combine the sugar and water, bring the mixture to a boil, and simmer for 5 minutes, or until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture has reduced by half.
- Let the sugar syrup cool completely.
- Place the chopped pineapple in a blender and puree until smooth. Measure out 3 cups.
- In a bowl whisk together the pineapple purée, the cooled sugar syrup, coconut milk, lime juice, rum and a pinch of salt.
- Chill the mixture several hours or overnight until it is very cold.
- Process in an ice-cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Transfer to freezer containers and freeze for at least 2 hours to harden.
- Serve the sherbet garnished with pineapple wedges and shaved coconut. Or make a boozy float with scoops of sherbet topped with champagne. Yea, do that last one.