Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Day 42 - Mango Sorbet

And it was all going so well...

Mango Sorbet (p. 485)

Martha, Martha, Martha... you're not going to like your grade today.

The last thing I want to do is to give my beloved professor a low grade. But this was a real turkey.

The sorbets have been a real surprise for me: I'd never been a sorbet eater. All I tasted was the sugar. But Martha's recipes were so fruity and sparkly, they put all other sorbets to shame. And I couldn't wait for mango! Who doesn't love mango???

I followed the instructions for mango, which involved chopping three of them and pureeing with some water in the food processor. So far, so good.

Then, it was time to put it through a fine sieve. The first sieve I tried, literally not a drop would pass through. Then I remembered that this sieve is too fine for fruit puree, so I moved it over to a less fine sieve, the one that has worked for both strawberry and pineapple puree.

After much stirring and pressing, the majority of the puree passed through. I added the simple syrup and did the egg trick. Have I told you about the egg trick? The trick is, if you have the right balance of puree to syrup, the egg (a whole, raw egg in the shell) will float, revealing a quarter-size piece of itself. If the egg reveals more of itself, you need to add more puree. If the egg is sinking lower, you need to add more syrup.

Well, the egg didn't show at all. So I added more syrup.

Still nothing.

A little more syrup, although it's getting awfully sweet.


Can't put any more syrup in, because it will be all sugar. But that egg isn't moving from the bottom!

So I start adding water.


More water.


Float, damn you, float! I added so much water that I doubled the size of the mixture.


Screw it, I said, I'm going ahead and freezing this anyway.

Cut to: the dullest, wateriest, most nothing sorbet you've ever tasted. Too sweet and no fruity zing. Booooooooo!

I should have chucked the egg trick right away and frozen the sorbet without adding anything extra, but there's a whole passage about getting the sweetness just right, and the egg is the sweet-o-meter, and I wanted to see that quarter-sized piece of egg that I've always seen before...

Martha, you should notate an exception for dense fruits that will never allow an egg to float!

What a disappointment. Next time this happens, I'm skipping the egg trick and taking my chances.

Jeff: F
Martha: F
(Now I'll never be on the show!)

Until we eat again....


  1. Oh no! Don't you hate it when a recipe doesn't work? I'm always so let down. And mango would've been soooo good. When we were in Hawaii my favorite shave ice was passion fruit and mango. Oh, you've made me want it again!

  2. Yes, so disappointing when it doesn't turn out. I've sympathized with your accounts of same. I think I'm going to give this another chance at some point this summer. But next time, I'm not going to worry about the floating (or not floating) egg.