And The Difference between Sherbert, Sorbet, Granita and Ice Cream
This recipe relies on SCIENCE..
I detail this below, but in a nutshell, I will say, these are frozen ingredients blended and frozen into ice cube trays and blended again.
No churning involved. Instead, this is a tricky recipe that depends on ice cube trays. And this one works perfectly.
It is also a bit of an unusual recipe because it is a frozen dessert yet the main ingredient is leafy greens and yet it does not taste like a salad.
Hey, leafy greens are a mainstay addition to healthy smoothies, so why not to healthy ice cream recipes, right?
Actually this is a sherbert, not ice cream.
Do you know the difference?
Well pull up a chair, or your screen, haha.
- Sherbert (or spelled “Sherbet”, both variations are correct according to Merriam Webster) is like sorbet with a creamy ingredient added. In the vegan world, we often add yogurt, cashew cream or coconut cream or even avocado.
- The definition of sorbet is a frozen treat made of only fruit and sugar. And in my world, “fruit” can sometimes be a veggie😍
- And then there is granita, which is basically sorbet only in icy flake form.
- Ice Cream
- And of course plain old ice cream, which is supposed to have at least 10 percent fat to earn the name. Vegan recipes typically use either cashews or coconut cream for that fat.
- Well, this term generally means a frozen treat that is made with wholesome vegan plant-based ingredients, often bananas but also coconut cream or other plant-based ingredients. The “N” stands for both bananas, but also “nice” in that no animal was harmed and the recipe is “nice” and healthy. So I suppose this recipe could also be a nicecream, and so could this my Blueberry Citrus Sherbet and this my Cauliflower Ice Cream.
Okay, class, now put away your dictionaries, and let’s move on to science.😂
To give this recipe the icey texture needed to call it a sherbert, there are a few tricks.
Be sure your leafy greens and mint leaves are frozen. I mean crispy frozen. I always keep baby kale and baby spinach and chopped chard leaves frozen in the freezer for many recipes, including smoothies.
Using crispy frozen leaves will help provide the quintessential crystal texture you want in a sherbert or even a sorbet.
And I suggest your use chilled maple syrup. Again, I always keep mine refrigerated.
Finally, use yogurt frozen into cubes in ice cube trays – don’t just dollop creamy yogurt into the blender.
I often keep plain yogurt or even plain cashew cream frozen in ice cube trays to use for smoothies and these frozen treats.
My favorite ice cube tray is recommended below, the same one I use in my Make-Ahead Smoothie Ice Cube Concentrates Recipe here. I love it because mixtures freeze fast, and the odd half-moon shape is blender-friendly.
Each cube in this tray holds 1 ounce so you’ll need 12 cubes of yogurt to achieve 1 1/2 cups.
And finally you don’t need the blueberries for texture but they give this sherbert a pretty blue/green shade and they help fruiten (Is this a word?) the flavor up, and move it away from green so you don’t think you are spooning a salad.
I hope you enjoy this recipe – it is one that depends more on chemistry than ingredients, wouldn’t you say?
And the result is both fun and nutritious.
Leafy Green Mint Chocolate Chip Sherbert (dairy-free, 5-ingredients, vegan)
This recipe fills about two ice cube trays
- 3 cups frozen leafy greens I used baby kale and baby spinach
- 1/2 cup blueberries (to give it a blue/green tinge and add sweetness)
- 1 1/2 cup plant yogurt (first freeze into ice cubes)
- 1/3 cup maple syrup, chilled
- 9 large mint leaves (frozen, and crushed)
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or chunks (optional)
- Blend up ice cream ingredients until creamy, but don't blend until warm - some high speed blenders actually warm the low layer near the blades. So blend, get everything combined, and stop blending. If your blender insists, add a bit of plant milk to get things creamy. (My vitamix needed this; my blendtec did not - blenders have their own personality, don't they?)
(Using frozen leafy greens makes it easier for a high speed blender to pulverize them. and you can just remove by hand any pesky larger specks that don't breakdown so your dessert doesn't look like a salad, haha.)
- Pour the mixture into ice cube trays - I love the half-crescent tray I recommend above because it freezes fast, and into a shape that blenders love to break down. This recipe fills about two trays. Each cube in the tray I recommend above holds about 2 ounces of mixture, and there are 14 cubes per tray, so you'll probably fill anywhere from 22 to 28 slots. If you use a different ice cube tray, the number of cubes you fill might be different.
- Freeze these trays about 2 hours; 1 if you want a very soft serve.
- Then re-blend only the amount of cubes you want to serve.
Once mixture is creamy (but not melted, don't blend too long), fold in chocolate chips or chunks or anything you want to fold in, really.
- Scoop the mixture into ice cream dishes. Sprinkle and enjoy!
- For the remaining cubes, let them thaw a bit on the counter before blending. Typically once they loosen easily from the tray, they are ready to blend.
- I hope you have fun with this recipe!