Sundae Sunday is the brainchild of my buddy Di of Di's Kitchen Notebook. She challenged a group of us to make an ice cream and post together today. She's doing a round up and will post it later this week.
With the weather sizzling around the U.S., I wanted to make something light and refreshing. I first had this sorbet when I spent the night at a coworker's house in the Napa Valley. A friend and I drove up to have dinner at the French Laundry, and Karen served us this treat when we got in. Although I thought I didn't like mangos, I loved it. M. adores mangos, and I've made it for him dozens of times since. I've tweaked it over the years, so that it is all about the mango. I hope you like it.
- Don't make this unless you can find really good mangos. How can you tell? I am the woman sniffing each and every mango I buy. If I can't smell its perfume, I don't buy it. One way to tell: find the ripest mango in the bin and smell it. If it's fragrant, the unripe ones will be, too.
- Large markets will sometimes have mangos from a couple different distributors in the same bin. If you find a fragrant ripe one, make sure the others you select have the same sticker.
- Leave mangos to ripen at room temperature in a paper bag.
- You want your mangos to be a tiny bit riper for this recipe than perhaps you'd want them to be for eating. And by a tiny bit, I mean a day, maybe two. Overripe mangos have an offensive flavor (to me anyway) that tastes like eating perfume. Blech!
- Some mangos have a lot of flesh and small puts, some have giant pits and little flesh. I buy an extra mango or two in case I end up with the giant pit variety.
- You can freeze simple syrup. Try putting it in an ice cube tray, then transferring to a zip top bag when frozen.
- Add only enough simple syrup to the mixture as you need to highlight the mango. We're not making candy here.
- The lime is only to make the flavor of the mango more prominent: you don't want your sorbet to be at all tart.
- Start with a small quantity of the simple syrup and lime, adding small amounts to fine tune the flavor until it's perfect for you.
Mango Sorbet - adapted from Gourmet Magazine
Makes about 1 quart
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
6 ripe mangos (see Notes)
Make the simple syrup:
Boil the sugar and water in a small saucepan until the sugar is dissolved. Let cool completely before using (I make this the day before and store in the fridge).
Make the sorbet:
Extract as much fiber-free flesh from the mango as possible, and put it in the jar of your blender. Add a couple tablespoons of simple syrup and the juice of half a lime. Blend until the mixture is smooth, then taste it. The mango should be predominant - not sweet, not tart, but somehow better than the fruit was by itself. When you reach that point and the mixture is perfectly smooth, transfer it to the canister of an ice cream maker and churn until the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. Transfer to a freezer safe container and freeze. Use within one week.