Sunday 4 December 2011

Lemon sorbet: when life gives you lemons, make sorbet

Every white will have its black, And every sweet its sour. ~ Thomas Percy

This year hasn't been the smoothest of years.  A bittersweet roller-coaster ride of a year.  It's crazy coz so many people I've talked to have also had a lemon of a year too.  Illness, marriage problems, family dramas; not to mention earthquakes, tsunamis and riots: you name it, its happened this year! What was it about twenty eleven?!

This year I've gotten married, passed my first year of med school and celebrated NZ's historic RWC victory but also said goodbye to a dear family friend, my grandma and my uncle. This topsy-turvey year has really driven home for me two important truths:

Fact 1: Life really is like a box of chocolates....dark chocolates.  The bitterness only makes you appreciate the sweetness all the more.  The deeper that sorry carves into your being, the more joy you can contain ~ Kahil Gibran.

Fact 2: Everything happens for a reason so when life gives you lemons, make lemonade...or Lemon Sorbet.

Yesterday we farewelled my uncle at a beautiful memorial service at his old church in Belmont.  It was a stunningly sunny summers day.  Not a cloud in sight.  There were as many laughs as there were tears, as much celebrating as there was grieving.  It was exactly what Uncle Joe would've wanted.

Sometimes, every once in a while, I get all down coz I'm missing all those loved ones who have passed away.  But when I shake out of it (usually with the help of some therapeutic ice cream) I think, actually I'm really lucky to have so many loved ones watching over me, smiling down on me and waiting for me in a big yum cha restaurant in the sky.  

{via sayingimages}
This gorgeous lemon sorbet, like life, is a perfect balance of sweet and sour.  Tangy and puckery, zesty and refreshing, it's like softly frozen lemonade.  Sunshine in a bowl.  It was exactly what I was craving in the baking hot sun.

Plus, I couldn't believe how easy it was to make!  Granted the process is much easier when you have an ice cream maker, but get this, the only ingredients needed are: lemons, sugar and water.   Yip, that's it.  So, if you keep lemons in the pantry, you're only ever an hour away from delicious homemade lemon sorbet.  Stoked!

Lemon Sorbet

From The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz

2 1/2 cups (625 ml) water
1 1/4 cup (250g) sugar
zest of 2 lemons
1 cup (250 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice (took around 4 of the massive lemons from our amazing lemon tree)

1. In a medium saucepan mix 1/2 a cup of the water with the sugar and zest.  Heat on medium heat until the sugar has dissolved, stirring frequently.  Remove from heat and add the remaining 2 cups of water.  Refrigerate till completely cold.

2. Stir the lemon juice into the sugar syrup and freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Dunzo!


  1. Sorry about your uncle Nessie. Simple beautiful and elegant sorbet.

  2. Hey Nessie, sorry to hear about your losses this year. You have a great outlook to help you :)
    Love your sorbet, looks so pretty and refreshing.

  3. It really has been a weird year for a lot people. I really hope you have a lovely and calm 2012.

    I did tell you

  4. cooking is so therapeutic :)

    wishing you well,

    Katie x

  5. Dear Nessie, I hope you fly up to Auck soon (if you haven't already) and get to spend some quality time with your family + loved ones... and recover from this year too. Sounds like it's been full of madness! P.S. I think I saw you in a few of Henry's wedding pictures - small world!

  6. I'm sorry to hear about your uncle (and your grandma and family friend). Hope the coming year is a little less tumultuous, a little kinder... what a lovely sorbet too :)

  7. It sounds like you have had some real ups and some real downs. When life hands you bittersweets, make grapefruit sorbet! I hope 2012 is a wonderful year for you.

  8. I'm so sorry for your losses this year. Totally agree -- for some reason it's been a shitter of a year for a lot of people. Here's hoping 2012 brings a bit more joy.

  9. Lora: Thanks so much Lora. I can't belive how easy the sorbet was to make too! The little flecks of lemon rind are oh so pretty but oh so yummy too - like candied peel. noms!

    timeforalittesomething: Thanks lovely Jem! Something sweet and delicious always helps lighten the soul huh!? :)

    Jagiri: 2011 was definitely a weirdo year! Wishing you a happy and fulfilling 2012 too!

    Katie: Cooking is definitely the best kind of therapy! And you get something to nom on at the end of it. What more could a girl as for? Hope you have a happy sunny Christmas xox

    Mel: Thanks heaps Mel! I am up in Auck for the summer - SO good to be home (oh rainy muggy auckland, how I've missed thee!). I WAS at Henry's wedding!! We're friends from law school/russell mac. Omg what a crazy small world?!

    milliemirepoix: Thanks for your kind words, Mika! 2012 can only be bigger, brighter and happier than 2011! Wishing you a delicious Christmas and sunny funny new year!! :)

    bunnyeatsdesign: mmmm grapefruit sorbet...sounds incredible Genie! Hope 2012 is spectacularly amazing for you too! xox

    teresa: Thanks heaps for your lovely message teresa. What a mad mad year for loads of people huh? Hope you have a wonderful Christmas and New Year with smiles and laughs and full bellies aplenty :) xox



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