[Recipe: Darkest Chocolate Sorbet]
There was a time when chocolate didn’t so much as turn my head. Crazy, I know. Unacceptable, even.
That was a time when bliss came in a box of Red Vines or a handful of assorted Jolly Ranchers (not cinnamon or grape, though. Never those). Or sugar cookies whose architectural appeal relied more on a towering smear of frosting than a cakey underneath.
(Incidentally, my mom calls this the sweet tooth vs. the fat tooth [she claims the latter]. Sweet tooth people crave sugary, sweet; fat tooth people crave creamy, rich, buttery, etc. And apparently, the younger the person, the more likely they are to have a sweet tooth; our “tooth” matures and craves more on the fat-tooth side as we age. Chocolate – especially the good kind – falls into the fat-tooth category.)
Then one year my sister-in-law came to stay, and she was (is, actually) ardently, reverently pro-chocolate. She made us brownies from a box, but took the liberty of stirring so many chocolate chips into the batter that my sweet tooth hedged. My palate changed that very day.
And so we come to this Darkest Chocolate Sorbet. This one’s been in the queue for a while, and my latest oven breakdown –- not to mention a waiting box of Valrhona’s Grand Cru Guanaja 70 percent fèves –- presented me with just the opportunity. The recipe comes from Clotilde, by way of David Lebovitz. A charming and reliable pedigree, to be sure.
Darkest Chocolate Sorbet
Adapted from Chocolate & Zucchini
This is like eating cold chocolate, not chocolate ice anything. A biteful or three and you’re good. I must add that upon my making, the chocolate didn’t completely melt when I added it to the hot water and cocoa mix, and the resulting micro bits of chocolate made it even better. Next time I’ll experiment with adding cinnamon or ancho chile powder. Makes 1 quart.
550 mL (2 ¼ C) water
2/3 C packed unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder [I used this Double-Dutch Dark cocoa]
1 C sugar
6 oz bittersweet chocolate (70% cocoa solids), finely chopped
½ tsp pure vanilla extract
A pinch of kosher salt
Make sure the bowl of your ice cream maker is frozen, per the manufacturer’s instructions.
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the water, cocoa powder, and sugar. Set the pan over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking continually. Remove from heat. Add chocolate. Let rest for 30 seconds as the chocolate begins to melt, add the vanilla and salt, then stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Let sit until cool, then refrigerate until chilled.
Just before freezing, whisk the mixture. Freeze in ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.