Sunday, 8 July 2007

HHDD#13 passionfruit slush

After my flirtation with coconut last weekend, I thought it was high time to continue my love affair with all things passionfruit. When handling and scooping out all those passionfruit whilst making my soufflĂ©, I was thinking how cute the shells would be as little cups for sorbet. I cleaned the shells, stored them in the freezer and filed away the idea in a little unused corner of my brain. And whaddayaknow: yesterday, when I bought my favourite interior magazine and browsed straight to the ‘entertaining’ bit which is edited by Donna Hay, my idea was staring right back at me, in the form of a six-page spread on ice cream and sorbet, all presented inside ‘cups’ made of orange halves, melon, lime and more.

So it was only fitting I used my passionfruit shells for this month’s Hay Hay it’s Donna Day, organised by Laura of Eat Drink Live. Remember when I said I thought my coconut sorbet would taste best paired with something else? That something else would have to be, without a doubt, passionfruit sorbet. I figured the tartness of the passionfruit would be the perfect companion to the ultra-creamy coconut, with a bit of coriander syrup thrown in to add a nice twist to it all. And of course it tasted great, just not in the shape I had imagined it. Because my passionfruit sorbet turned out to be passionfruit slush, but let’s call it granita. Sounds like it was my intention all along to end up with a grainy mix, rather than a nicely scoopable or quenelle-able frozen mass. Maybe it didn’t freeze like I wanted to because I don’t have an ice cream maker, maybe it was the alcohol, or maybe it was because I made up the recipe as I went along.

I looked at a few different recipes, but they all combined the passionfruit with another fruit and I wanted pure, unadulterated passionfruit flavour. Also, I couldn’t find any unsweetened passionfruit juice in the shops and I had no intention of bankrupting myself by buying enough passionfruit in order to get about half a litre of pulp/juice. So I just bought the sweetened stuff (sweetened with sugar, not nasty aspartame), skipped the ‘boil juice with sugar’ stage (because I didn’t want my sorbet to be overtly sweet) and threw all my ingredients together. Which resulted in said slush.

I had it all figured out: one quenelle of my coconut sorbet, one quenelle of passionfruit sorbet, and a stripe of coriander syrup - presented like an abstract painting on a white plate.* Only one cannot make nice quenelles with slush - granita I mean. Luckily ‘help’ was at hand, in the shape of Helen’s HHDD entry, in which she combined two sorbet flavours with sauce and churned it all into one delectable-looking combination. I threw half of my coconut sorbet and half of the passionfruit granita together and ended up with a deliciously rich, creamy yet tangy, coconut-passionfruit sorbet. Which definitely won’t last long in my freezer. The other half of the coconut sorbet I’m keeping aside for my dad. And the other half of the slush, you ask? Well, S and I do cocktail hour at weekends, and the icy passionfruit with coriander syrup made a perfect base for a tropical cocktail.

* This combination is of course inspired by Claudia Fleming’s signature dessert (coconut tapioca soup with coconut and passionfruit sorbet, coconut tuile, passionfruit caramel and coriander syrup), which I had the pleasure of enjoying in the Gramercy Tavern in New York last year. I skipped a few steps and stuck to the sorbet and syrup bit. I wanted the coriander flavour to be really intense, so I doubled the amount Ms Fleming’s uses in her syrup (thinking I could always dilute it if it was too strong), and it turned out rather nice.

passionfruit granita

1/2 litre passionfruit juice
4 passionfruit (pulp and seeds)
1 shot glass passionfruit jenever (I bought a bottle in Belgium, in this shop, Peterman’s brand)

Mix everything together and freeze. Then when you end up with granita, mix it all together with the coconut sorbet you made last week to create a coconut-passionfruit sorbet.

coriander syrup
adapted from Claudia Fleming’s Last Course

1/3 cup sugar syrup
1/2 cup firmly packed coriander leaves

For sugar syrup, mix equal measures of water and sugar and bring to boil. Turn off heat as soon as sugar is dissolved and put in glass jar with lid firmly screwed on.
Plunge coriander leaves in boiling water for 15 seconds, then drain and immediately plunge them into ice water (bowl of cold water with ice cubes). Remove from water and pat dry. Combine syrup and coriander leaves and blend (I used an immersion blender). Let rest for 30 minutes, then strain and discard solids.

passionfruit shell ‘cups’

passionfruit shells, halved

With a paring knife, remove coral-looking bits from the inside of shells. This is fairly easy, try to remove the whole membrane at once. Rinse, dry and freeze.


SteamyKitchen said...

SO SO refreshing for summer heat!

ChichaJo said...

What great presentation and a lovely combination of flavors! :) Love those passionfruit cups!

Tartelette said...

I am glad my little "kitchen light bulb moment" helped this beautiful creation!

Barbara said...

A fabulous entry and I love the presentation. Thanks for joining in at HHDD.

Brilynn said...

Those are adorable! I just finished photographing some watermelon chocolate chip sorbet in lemon cups, I love the look!