Orange Sherbet – An easy homemade summertime treat

Orange Sherbet -

28 Jun Orange Sherbet – An easy homemade summertime treat

Orange Sherbet -

Like most kids, when I discovered wordplay I was so thrilled with my new found skill I told jokes and made puns non-stop. On one occasion, I followed my grandmother around her apartment like a duckling, quacking knock-knock jokes at her in a continuous loop.

Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Olive who?
Olive YOU! Ha ha ha.

I wasn’t sure if the punchline meant “All of you” or “I love you” but it got a laugh so I went with it. Besides, if I asked her to explain my own joke, I’d lose my audience.

All told, I had about four jokes in my repertoire, which I rotated like a spinning wheel. These were the only ones from a fat, dog-eared book of kids jokes and riddles I could understand. Having memorized them, I appointed myself the family entertainer. A little song. A little dance. A little knock-knock joke perchance?

Okay, if you insist…

Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Madam who?
Madam foot’s caught in the door! Open it! Ha ha ha.

See what I did there? I cursed. Only it wasn’t real cursing. It’s a knock-knock joke. You can curse in jokes. But stub your toe and cuss? That’ll get you sent to your room to think about things.

I thought up knock-knock jokes.

Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Ally who?

I should have stuck with published material. I’ve no idea why I thought this was hilarious, but I told it over and over and over again, slipping the sure-fire Olive version in just to keep the crowd happy.

Somewhere between Cycle Three and Eternity, my kind grandmother put a quiet stop to things with her own joke.

Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Sherbet who?
It’s a sher-bet you’ll like this.

Orange Sherbet -

She was right.

And smart. It’s hard to tell jokes when your mouth is full of icy, melty, oh-so-orange sherbet.

Orange sherbet

My grandmother bought hers from the store. Unlike ice cream, which came in a waxed cardboard carton with flaps that never worked quite right, sherbet came in a plastic tub with a fancy, sure-seal, snap-on lid. The frozen treat within was neon orange and stained my tongue.

Today I make my own orange sherbet. What my homemade version lacks in colour it more than makes up for  in flavour. Orange you glad I made some?  Okay… I’ll shut up now. Hand me a spoon.

Orange Sherbet -

Orange Sherbet
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep / inactive time: 
Cook / active time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 quart
Orange sherbet is a classic hot weather treat. Sweet and creamy, it's lighter than ice cream but richer than sorbet. It tastes like sunshine in a bowl.
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
  • finely grated zest of 1 orange (about 2 to 3 tablespoons)
  • pinch fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon orange liqueur such as Triple Sec
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cups heavy cream (35%)
  1. Make the orange mixture: Place the sugar, orange juice, zest and salt in blender. Purée until the sugar is well dissolved. Pour the orange mixture into a bowl through a fine mesh sieve to remove the zest and any remaining pulp pieces. Discard this. Stir in the liqueur, lemon juice, and vanilla into the orange juice mixture. Add the cream and stir again to blend well.
  2. Chill: Cover and chill 2-3 hours. If you chill the sherbet overnight, don't be surprised if the juice and cream have separated.
  3. Get the sherbet extra cold: About 20 minutes before you're ready to churn the sherbet, give it a good stir and then put it in the freezer to get it extra cold. If you're forgetful like me, set a times so it won't freeze.
  4. Churn the sherbet: Churn the sherbet in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer directions. The sherbet will be very soft. Scoop it in to a lidded, freezer-proof container and chill for another 2-3 hours in the coldest part of your freezer.
The sherbet will likely be very pale. If a bright orange colour is imporant to you, add a drop or two of natural orange food colouring to achieve the right look.



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  • A Canadian Foodie
    Posted at 15:16h, 28 June Reply

    CORNY – it should have been CORN ice cream!
    Stop by and look at the lilac jelly post when you’ve time – I understand… will write a personal note, later.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 21:10h, 28 June Reply

      I actually have a recipe for corn gelato I have yet to share…

      Glad your lilac jelly turned out. I’m jealous. Maybe next year…

  • Sarah
    Posted at 02:15h, 19 July Reply

    Ha – love your knock knock jokes…my husband and I go around saying the Olive joke repeatedly…still. haha. Your sherbet looks delicious! I just made a batch of peach sherbet last weekend – love how icy, smooth, and fruity it is.

    • Charmian Christie
      Posted at 13:51h, 19 July Reply

      Glad someone appreciates my jokes. I must have been insufferable!

      Peach sherbet sounds wonderful. I’ve done peach ice cream and sorbet, but not sherbet. That can be amended easily!

      Keep cracking those jokes!

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