Sorbets are always a nice way to finish a meal if you don’t want anything too heavy. They can also be used as palate cleansers between courses. Either way, a sorbet is pretty much always made the same way — a fruit purée is mixed with a little sugar syrup in the right quantity to make it freeze. It will become really shiny and soft to scoop.
This particular recipe for pear and grappa sorbet is a wicked combo and one of my favorites, so give it a go. It’s great served in a bowl with lovely soft fruits scattered over the top. A good-quality vodka instead of grappa would be quite interesting, and without wanting to sound like a nutcase, absinthe would be nice, too. Most good supermarkets and liquor stores sell grappa these days. Nardini is a particularly good brand.
This recipe will make enough for six people to have a couple of scoops each: but for four, you can make this amount and keep the rest in the freezer for another day. I suggest you use a fairly shallow earthenware or thick porcelain dish that you can put in the freezer beforehand — this speeds up the freezing process for the sorbet.
Try to get really ripe pears — even the ones they sell cheaply in the market. If they’re really, really ripe and soft to the touch, simply remove the skin and put the flesh into a bowl — you won’t need to cook them at all. This is how I did it in Italy when the fruit guy, called Pippo, at the weekly Terranuova Bracciolini market near Montevarchi gave me a whole tray of pears for free. Go and say hello and he might do the same for you!–Jamie Oliver
Jamie Oliver's Pear Sorbet
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 40 M
- 2 H, 40 M
- Makes enough for 6
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This sorbet will last in the freezer for a couple of days — after that it will crystallize.