The last time I made a pitcher of limonata, I discovered yet another delicious way to pair these two ingredients. I strained the basil that’s used for the simple syrup, as I always do, but this time I forgot about it and left it on a small saucer on the counter. Overnight, the basil had dried out but instead of throwing it away, I decided to taste it … and I liked it!
Now, I use it to add a crunchy sweetness to a tangy lemon sorbet. (Italians waste nothing).
I’ve included a recipe for a simple sorbet or you could use store bought. The idea is to try this refreshing frozen delight with a sprinkling of the candied basil on top. You might think this is merely a fun summer treat but I plan on serving it in-between courses (sort of a palate cleanser) at my next dinner party.
- 1 cup fresh basil, loosely packed
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 1 cup lemon juice
- candied basil, chopped
- To make the candied basil, combine the basil, sugar and water in a small saucepan. Simmer until the sugar is dissolved, remove from heat. Let cool (leave basil in) to room temperature.
- Remove the basil, place on a dry surface to let dry thoroughly. Save simple syrup for another use (Limonata).
- To make the sorbet, use a small sauce pan and stir together the sugar and water. On medium-high heat, bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Cook for a minute until sugar is completely dissolved.
- Remove from heat, add the lemon juice and let cool a bit and then refrigerate until cold.
- Pour mixture into an ice cream canister, freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacture’s directions.
- Serve immediately, with a sprinkling of candied basil and perhaps a sugared lemon slice.