When you do the Commercial Cookery certificates at TAFE, one of the theory modules you do is called HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point). This is a system of strictly controlled food handling to avoid contamination of food, from its initial source until it is served up to you on a plate. In this module, the one foodstuff that is open to contamination more than many others is ice-cream, due to it having eggs, cream and milk as its main ingredients. It undergoes several heating and chilling procedures during production, and contamination can happen at any of these points.
Now, ice-cream is one of my favourite desserts, and I was a bit put off by all the maligning of my much-loved treat. It didn’t actually put me off, but it did make me aware of how easily someone with a compromised immune system could be easily brought down by something as simple as ice-cream.
So, in an attempt to rectify this imbalance with a popular sweet, I have decided to give you recipes that will indulge your love of this sweet, without the hazards involved in its production. There are many forms of ice-cream – using the term in its broadest sense – including sorbet, sherbets, gelato, semifreddo (which means half frozen), cassata and granita, to name a few. As you would realise, some of these are actually ices, and are a delicious form of delicacy, which are very easy to make.
It is best to use an ice-cream maker for these (Breville make a cheapie at about $70), but if you are unable to obtain one, don’t despair. You will just have more manual work to do.
After initial chilling with these sorbets and sherbets, you will need to remove them from the freezer and either break them up with a fork, whisk them or quickly beat with an electric beater to ensure they do not form large crystals when freezing. You can beat these as often as you like, and the more you do it, the finer and lighter they will be.
Accompaniments? Who needs accompaniments for these yummy desserts. Use the basic sorbet recipe (the sugar syrup) as a base for any other fruits that you may desire.
4 Cups chopped seedless watermelon
juice of 1 lemon
1½ cups (375ml) water
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
Process watermelon and lemon juice until smooth. Strain well. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan, bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Simmer, without stirring for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, cool. Blend in watermelon mixture. If using an ice-cream maker, chill the liquid in the freezer for about 1 hour before churning. Otherwise, place in the freezer in a flat pan until partly frozen. For both methods, beat, re-freeze and beat again. Whisk eggwhite until soft peaks form, fold through watermelon mixture. Pour into a lamington pan (or a rectangular plastic container) and freezes overnight.
FOLLOW THE FREEZE/BEAT/REFREEZE/BEAT METHOD FOR ALL OF THESE.
LIME & GINGER SORBET
6 limes – squeezed
¾ cup sugar
3 cups water
1 teaspoon grated ginger
Place the lime juice, ginger, sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Remove from heat, and place in a shallow tray. Freeze for two hours, remove and beat, then refreeze. Repeat. Leave overnight to freeze.
NOTE: Remove all sorbets and ices from the freezer and sit for about 5 minutes before scooping.
2 cups (440g) caster sugar
500g mixed fresh or thawed frozen berries
Place sugar and 2 cups water in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat, bring to the boil and boil for 10 minutes. Pour syrup into a heatproof bowl and cool completely. Once cool, pour into a jug and chill until required.
Place berries in a food processor and process until smooth. Pass through a sieve and place in a metal pan. Add ¾ cup of the chilled syrup, mix well and freeze for 4 hours. Remove from the freezer every hour and whisk with a fork to break up ice. When set, scrape the mixture with a fork until it resembles shaved ice. Pile into glasses.
2 cups (500ml) milk
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
2 teaspoons powdered gelatine (available from cake making section of supermarket)
400g Fruche Lite French Vanilla
2/3 cup (160ml) fresh lemon juice
Heat milk, sugar and gelatine in a saucepan on low. Stir until warmed through, and sugar and gelatine have dissolved – DO NOT BOIL. Transfer to a freezer-proof container and stir in Fruche and lemon juice. Cover and freeze until almost frozen.
Working quickly, transfer almost frozen sherbet to a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Return to container and freeze.
Use a fork to break up lemon sherbet roughly and serve immediately.
¾ cup (165g) caster sugar
1 cup (250ml) extra strong coffee
1 eggwhite, lightly beaten
Place sugar and I cup of water in a small saucepan on medium heat until sugar dissolves, then bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. remove from heat and cool. Add coffee to sugar syrup with eggwhite.
Freeze mixture in an ice-cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions, or place in freezer until just frozen. Remove, pour into food processor and process until mixture is smooth, then freeze again. Repeat if you want a lighter gelato.
Serve with biscotti if preferred.
FRUIT SALAD ICE-CREAM STICKS
1 x 375 ml can evaporated milk
1 cup caster sugar
juice of 1 orange
juice of 1 lemon
2 bananas, mashed
pulp of 4 passionfruit
1½ cups frozen raspberries, thawed
Place the can of evaporated milk in the freezer for 1-2 hours. Place chilled milk in the large bowl of an electric mixer and beat the milk on high until thick and fluffy. Add sugar gradually and beat well between additions.
Add the juice, bananas, passionfruit and raspberries and stir gently with a large metal spoon until well combined.
Use ice-block moulds, or plastic or paper cups as moulds for the ice-cream. Fill 2/3 full of fruit mixture and place a wooden craft stick (from supermarkets, newsagents or hobby stores) in the centre of each. Place in a tray and put in the freezer for several hours or overnight to set. Snip or tear the cups to free the ice-creams easily.
Tim Alderman 2015