This Changes Everything
I had an experience with chocolate last night- and I mean EXPERIENCE: heart pounding, leg shaking, giggle coxing, divinely inspired- experience. I think I hurt myself. I think it was glorious.
What did it? How did this happen? Dark Chocolate Sorbet. It swept me off my feet.
I’m sitting here struggling to find the words to describe this sorbet. Literally. It’s incredibly rich and deceptively creamy. Please believe me when I say that even making this sorbet was magical. I’m not talking rabbit out of a hat magic. I’m talking about love at first site, sparks flying out of your ears, cannonball to the gut magic. This changes everything.
First things first, if you don’t have an an ice cream maker, get one now. When I say now, I mean NOW!
What’s so magical about this sorbet is the transformation of chocolate. I started off with two solid, dark chocolate candy bars and about a cup of cocoa powder. I simply mixed those two chocolates with hot vanilla and sugar water and, well, it changed everything. The chocolate became this nearly black, loose chocolate soup. I cooled the chocolate in an ice bath and put it in the refrigerator, only to come back every hour to check on it. Every hour, on the hour, for 5 hours I came back to check on my chocolate glory. Not only was the smell of the chocolate out of the world, but the mixture thickened slightly with each passing hour. After five hours the chocolate became this beautiful velvety, chocolate heaven syrup. I wanted to shower with it. Yea, get in the shower with my bowl of dark chocolate and spend the rest of my night there. I thought better of it, and decided to freeze it in the ice cream maker. But seriously, in the shower or in the ice cream maker, this recipe is screaming, unapologetic magic.
Dark Chocolate Sorbet
The Sweet Life by Kate Zuckerman
1 vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon sugar
3 Tablespoons corn syrup
6 ounces dark chocolate (61 to 65 percent cocoa solids), chopped into half inch pieces
4 ounces Dutch processed cocoa powder (approximately 1 cup)
To Make the Syrup
1. Run the paring knife down the center of the vanilla bean. Split it open with your fingers and use the knife to scrape out the tiny black seeds into a heavy-bottomed sauce pan.
2. Add 2 1/4 cup water, the sugar, the corn syrup and the vanilla pod and bring it to a rolling boil over medium high heat.
3. Remove from heat and allow the bean to steep for 15 minutes. Remove the pod, dry it, and save it for another use. If you are using vanilla extract, add it after the syrup has been removed from the heat.
Prepare the Chocolate
1. Combine the chopped chocolate and cocoa powder in a medium-sized bowl. Gently whisk in 1/3 of the hot vanilla syrup. ( The chocolate will begin to seise a bit.)
2. Whisk in the remaining syrup, in two more parts, and continue to whisk until the sauce is shiny, thick, and smooth, about 4 minutes.
3. Pass the chocolate sorbet base through a fine-mesh strainer to remove any lumps of cocoa powder. Place the sorbet in an ice bath to cool completely.
4. Transfer to the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours or up to 1 week.
Churn the Sorbet
1. Churn the sorbet in an ice cream machine according to the machine manufacturer’s directions. The sorbet is finished once it has increased in volume and it holds whisk lines from the stirring mechanism and mounds like softly whipped cream.
2. Transfer to the freezer for 4 hours to attain scoopable consistency.
Serve with a crunchy wafer or a sprinkle of nuts.
I served this sorbet with orange poppyseed biscuits. Delicious! I’ll post that recipe for you tomorrow. For now, let’s just focus on the magic, ok?