I’ve no idea why I’m making a sorbet when the winter seems to be setting in and hot food seems more appropriate, but I suppose that’s the way I am. Thyme sorbet has become a bit of a cheffy cliché in the recent past but I still wanted to see what it was like to make. Most recipes that I’ve seen follow a pretty straightforward sorbet formula, often with lemon, which is additionally infused with thyme. There’s nothing at all wrong with that but I’d seen a sorbet with a milky quality in France and I thought I’d try adding milk to this sorbet before the thyme in the garden is too ravaged by the winter.
This recipe only makes a small amount, but I think this works best in small amounts as an accent to other flavours – perhaps a dessert made with some of the blackberries you collected and froze earlier in the year. I used a mix of lemon and ordinary thyme in this recipe but I think it works with either
5 sprigs of thyme
Zest of 1 lemon
300 ml full cream milk
300 ml water
200 g caster sugar
Bring the milk, water and sugar to the boil, stirring now and then to make sure that the sugar has completely dissolved. As soon as it reaches boiling point take the pan of the heat and add the thyme and lemon zest. Cover and leave to infuse for 30 minutes or so.
Strain through muslin and chill thoroughly. Pour into the ice cream maker and let it do its business in the usual way.
There’s a good chance that this will not freeze fully in a simple home ice-cream maker like mine and it might need to spend a little time in the freezer to firm up. If it’s in the freezer for too long, though, it will need to be taken out to soften a little before serving.
While I’m on the subject of little bits and pieces for dessert, I came across a chilli and lime milk chocolate bar in the Montezuma’s chocolate shop in Kingston recently. Lovely chocolate on its own, but it makes an interesting dessert if you melt five or six squares and drizzle it over a chopped up, ripe mango.