Julia Child

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(recipe from The Way to Cook, Julia Child, Alfred A. Knopf)

"It's lemon sherbet in party dress when you serve it in balloon-shaped goblets, top it with a julienne of home-candied lemon peel, and pour around it a shallow pool of aquavit. I first had this splendid combination in Venice."
-- Julia Child, The Way to Cook, Alfred A. Knopf.

Yield: For 2 quarts, serving 10 to 12

  • 4 to 6 large lemons-enough to
  • make 1/2 scant cup of zests
  • (yellow part of peel only) and
  • 1 cup of juice
  • 2 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 4 cups of water
  • 2 egg whites lightly beaten into a
  • foam with 1/8 tsp of salt
  • 1 cup or so iced aquavit (2 hours in
  • the freezer)
  • Candied lemon peel, optional (see special note)
Special Equipment Suggested : A vegetable peeler;an electric blender--more efficient for this puree than the food processor; a 2 quart saucepan with tight fitting cover; an ice cream scoop; a mixing bowl with a tray of ice cubes and water to cover them. For a quick chill; chilled goblets.

The sherbet. Remove the zest from the lemons with the vegetable peeler.To extract their flavor, pulverize them 2 minutes with 1 cup of the sugar in the electric blender; add 1 1/2 cups of the water and pulverize 2 minutes more.
Pour into the saucepan, add the rest of the sugar, bring to the simmer, swirl the pan by its handle for several seconds, until you are sure the sugar has completely dissolved. Remove from heat. Pour in the cup of lemon juice and the rest of the water; stir for several minutes over the ice cubes and water until well chilled.
Whisk in the egg whites, and freeze according to your machine directions.

Serving. The moment of serving, scoop a ball or two or sherbet into each chilled goblet, pour around it a big spoonful of aquavit, and if you wish, fork out a half dozen strands of the candied peel for decoration.

Special Note: Candied citrus peel is a charming edible decoration for sherbets, puddings, and many fruit desserts. Once made, refrigerate in a covered jar where it will keep for weeks.

Yield: Enough for 12 servings
  • The zests (colored part of peel only)
  • of 4 large fine lemons, 3 oranges
  • or 2 grapefruit
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup of water
Special Equipment Suggested : A vegetable peeler; a 6-cup saucepan with tight-fitting cover Remove the zests with the vegetable peeler and cut them into neat julienne strips 1 1/2 inches long and less than 1/8 inch wide.Simmer in 1 quart of water 6 minutes, drain, rinse in cold water, set aside. Bring the sugar and water to the simmer in the saucepan, and when the sugar has dissolved completely, cover the pan tightly and boil for a moment or two, until the last drops of syrup to fall from the end of a metal spoon form a thread. Remove from heat, stir in the peel, let steep for an hour, and it is ready to use.