Melon Sorbet

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Please welcome Garrett McCord, who came by the other day to make these melon sorbets. So good! Refreshing on a hot summer day. ~Elise

Melons are one of those rare ingredients that are practically perfect as is. While they do take well to being tarted up a bit (maybe a light dusting of salt, few lashings of lemon juice, or some chopped mint), they certainly don’t need to be overdressed. No, with melons like cantaloupe and honeydew you want to preserve and highlight their sweet, musky flavors.

These recipes does little more than simply purée and churn these summer fruits into refreshing sorbets bursting with melon flavor. The cantaloupe sorbet is highlighted with citrus, and the honeydew sorbet is engaged with a simple syrup steeped with fresh mint. Cheap and easy to create, these sorbets are delightful on their own or served with fresh blackberries, and they’re a perfect palate cleansing course for a summer dinner party.

Melon Sorbet Recipe

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  • Yield: Each recipe makes approximately 1 quart.

Ingredients

Cantaloupe Sorbet

  • 5 cups of diced cantaloupe (about 2 1/2 - 3 pounds)
  • 2/3 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons of light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup of lemon or lime juice
  • Pinch of salt

Honeydew Sorbet

  • 5 cups of diced honeydew (about 2 1/2 - 3 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup of mint leaves, well packed
  • 2/3 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons of light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • Pinch of salt

Method

1 To prepare the melons, cut them open and scoop out the strings and seeds and discard them. Carefully cut off the rind and discard that as well. Cut up the melon and place into a blender or food processor and purée well until smooth and soupy. Set aside in a bowl.

2 Make a simple syrup by placing the sugar, water, and lemon zest in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat until the sugar has melted and the mixture has come to boil. Remove from heat. Add the mint (if using) and let sit for 10 minutes. Strain out the lemon zest (and mint if using).

3 Combine the simple syrup, citrus juice, corn syrup, and salt with the puréed melon. Stir well. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to chill completely in a refrigerator. (Chill for several hours or overnight.)

4 Process in an ice cream machine via the manufacturer's instructions. The sorbet will have a soft texture right out of the ice cream maker. If you would like a firmer consistency, transfer the sorbet to an airtight container and place in a freezer for an hour or two. Once frozen, you may need to let it sit for a few minutes at room temperature to soften before serving.

*Note: Muskmelon, Canary melon, or any other type of melon can be used in these recipes. Watermelons may work too, but I haven't tested it with these recipes.

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Showing 4 of 11 Comments

  • leah

    Very good and really easy to make with an ice crean maker.

  • Mike

    Update from 8/30

    I made the cantaloupe version, following the recipe to the letter, it was delicious. Next, I decided to make a watermelon/lemon version using Splenda instead of sugar. The flavor was great but there was definitely a difference in texture. The Splenda version was much icier, completely missing was the smoothness of the first batch. Although neither lasted long, the texture of the sugar version was far superior to that of the Splenda version.

    Thanks for your testing and notes, Mike! ~Garrett

  • Becky

    Made this yesterday, the freshest most wonderful homemade dessert ever! I knew it would harden in the freezer, and my kids just adore italian ice, so I put out our fresh servings then spooned 3oz of the sorbet into 4oz kids cups and froze them. The kids really enjoyed their ‘italian ice’ for dessert yesterday!

  • Mike

    Could I use Splenda in place of the sugar in this recipe?

    I don’t know. I never use it. Try making it yourself that way, if it works I hope you’ll leave a comment detailing your results. ~Garrett

  • Russell

    For those against refined sugar, would turbinado sugar work for this application, or would it effect the flavor too much?

    Also, if I were to use honey, I would want to use something that would flavor well with the melon. I’m sure your grocery store variety “clover” honey would work, but I would be willing to bet orange blossom or some other 100% fruit tree variety would be incredible.

    Another idea would be to substitute part of the melon with some English cucumber.

    I would stick to the recipe as listed to be honest as anything else will change the flavor. Turbinado has a deeper flavor that might eclipse the melon a bit. I like the cucumber idea, though. ~Garrett

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