Minestrone of summer fruits and basil sorbet

Minestrone of summer fruit

It’s been a while in between posts and I feel like summer is slipping away. Having come from Melbourne, where the weather is fickle to say the least, I’ve been enjoying the consistently warm weather here in Perth. It’s normally this time where Melburnians start saying goodbye to summer and hello autumn. But my friends here have told me not to worry. There is still more warm weather to come! That’s fine by me.

I don’t know about you, but in summer, I generally prefer my meals to be light and fresh. So salads have been consumed in abundance. Dishes like stews have been banished for the time being. I’ll start thinking about them when the first signs of cool weather eventuate. The light approach applies to desserts too (except maybe for chocolate). I love making desserts that are fruit driven at this time of year.

Minestrone of summer fruits and basil sorbet
serves 6-8 

Basil sorbet
1 cup basil leaves, lightly packed
200g caster/white sugar
300ml water

Wash basil leaves if required to remove any soil/grit. Bring water to the boil. Add basil leaves and blanche for 10 seconds, remove and refresh immediately in iced water. Add sugar to retained water in saucepan and stir until dissolved. Set aside syrup to cool. Combine syrup and basil leaves in a food processor/blender and process. I wanted to see pieces of basil in the sorbet so I didn’t process the mixture for too long.

Some people might feel a bit dubious about this sorbet but you’ll be surprised how good it is.

Berry juice
500g very red strawberries
100g raspberries
50g caster sugar

Place all ingredients in a metal bowl. Mix well and leave for a few hours. Strain through a fine sieve and chill.

Well, that’s the hard work out of the way. Now the easy part…

Gather together some summer fruit. The idea is to have a colourful array in the dish. I went for peaches, mangoes, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries. Cut large fruit like peaches and mangoes into fairly small pieces.

To serve, place fruit in serving dish so that they are fairly evenly distributed. Carefully pour berry juice into dish. Place a scoop of sorbet on top. Garnish with julienne of basil. Enjoy.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Minestrone of summer fruit



11 Responses to “Minestrone of summer fruits and basil sorbet”

  1. 1 Patricia Scarpin February 20, 2007 at 9:14 pm


    The color of this sorbet is stunning – I can’t get enough of it!

    I love this recipe – fresh, colorful, with a beautiful presentation.

    We are in the same season so I know what you mean. 😉

  2. 2 madchilli February 20, 2007 at 10:48 pm


    Glad you like the sorbet. It’s such a nice fresh green and the flavour is really interesting. Great to know we are going through the same season!

  3. 3 Veron February 21, 2007 at 3:19 am

    Steven you really have to stop making my mouth water with all that summer fruits! It’s still winter over here. That basil sorbet must have tasted phenomenal with all that colorful selection of fruits you have.

  4. 4 madchilli February 21, 2007 at 5:02 am

    The basil sorbet goes really well with these fruit and I think with most others as well. The nice thing about this dessert is you can throw in any fruit you like (well, almost anything). I’m sorry that it’s still winter over there. It will be my turn soon. 🙂

  5. 5 Freya February 23, 2007 at 7:54 am

    Steven, this looks so summery and beautiful! I love the Basil Sorbet, it contrasts so wonderfully with the red fruits! Also, I adore the brown bread ice cream from your last post – my favourite homemade ice cream!

  6. 6 madchilli February 24, 2007 at 7:00 am

    Freya, the basil sorbet is just great, not only the looks of this dish, but flavour contrast as well. I love brown bread ice-cream too. Makes good use of stale bread!

  7. 7 Lydia February 26, 2007 at 1:58 am

    Gorgeous, with the basil sorbet. I plant tons of basil in my herb garden every summer, so I’ll definitely save this recipe to try with my own harvest. Thanks so much.

  8. 8 Paul February 26, 2007 at 7:36 am

    Hi Steven,

    I’ve had an Apple & Basil Sorbet at Rockpool and yes, it was divine! I will definitely be making this before the season is over.

    It looks beautiful & my partner can’t wait to try it!


  9. 9 madchilli February 27, 2007 at 3:53 am

    Lydia, please do try this. It’s delicious. There are variations on this as pointed out by Paul below. Thanks for dropping by. 🙂

    Paul, I’ve heard of that combination along with some others. Just goes to show how versatile the basic basil sorbet is!

  10. 10 MeltingWok May 8, 2007 at 9:40 am

    My god, I found another M;sian (from PJ, if you could remember where that is hehehe..) First, I thought madchilli is some site related to southern chili cooking, but not..your photographs are absolutely gorgeous, wish I have one of those cameras you have. It’s freaking 90 degrees here today, official summer 😛 The above fruit bowl looks really tempting, cheers !:)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

February 2007
« Jan   Mar »



%d bloggers like this: