A question abourt sorbets.
My family was thinking about making some for Easter dessert. I'd rather they look like this (first two are sorbet):
This is the recipe for the latter: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
I want it to be on the creamier side, not icy like in the second picture and what I've seen in most pictures. Is there an ingredient I'm missing here? Are the ones in the first picture just sitting out longer? Any help would be appreciated!
I'm not an expert either but I believe the first is actually a gelato, and the second is a sorbet. Difference being that gelato contains milk whereas sorbet does not.
I think it's just the fruit choice. I've made berry sorbets with sugar, water, berries and lemon juice (just like the recipe you posted) and it always resulted in a creamy consistency. I'm assuming because the watermelon is so thin and has such a high water content that it freezes with larger ice crystals.
If you want your sorbet to be not to icy, no matter what the flavor, timing is critical. Make it at 4:00 to serve at 8:00. OR add alcohol to the mixture which lowers the freezing temperature and gives you more leeway, time-wise. Three or 4 tablespoons to a quart of liquid should do it, the amount depending on the proof of the alcohol. I use Everclear at the highest percentage in order to use the least amount. Takes a bit of practice to get the amount right, but it really works.
To avoid ice crystals you have to have the right sugar saturation. Your fruit makes a difference so the professionals measure the sugar saturation. Some people swear by the egg test - float a washed raw egg, if it is half suspended the sugar sat is correct. I don't know if it really works, but i have used it sometimes. Another trick is to add invert sugar - many use glucose or corn syrup. Some folks like to add powdered egg white to get a fluffier consistency. You can also add a bit of alcohol to reduce the freezing point. Finally many professionals add ice cream stabilizers (a mix of gums) to their sorbets, although there are purists that are dead set against it. I have used a guar/xanthan mixture to some success.
Lastly the quality of your machine makes a difference. This is the most important difference between the professional shots you have and the recipe. Many pros use a very expensive machine that basically shaves the quick frozen base into creamy fantasticness. I want one - but they are very very expensive.
You don't need milk to make a creamy sorbet.