Ginger and Thyme Pear Sorbet

ginger and thyme pear sorbet

I made this sorbet a month or so ago but then the arctic blast came and I thought who wants sorbet during a snow storm? I know, it’s only winter in the northern hemisphere but are there pears in Australia? Yes Virginia there are pears in Australia (thanks Internets)! Not that I used actual pears in this recipe. I intended to use actual fruit but the Comice pears (my favorite, in fact the only pear I’ll eat) ripening to creamy perfection on the kitchen table got eaten, straight up- no frills, when I wasn’t looking.

The nectar makes this so easy I felt obliged to spice things up. Two versions. One with hard cider and one without. Both were lovely. Light, not too sweet, with just a hint of heat from the ginger and pepper and a “what’s that secret ingredient?” herbal note from the thyme.  I used a ginger cider for the boozy  (though not really that boozy) version which adds a bit more spritz and a bit more heat. I served the non-alcoholic version after dinner the night I made it and tucked the hard cider version away for a sunny day.

I’d forgotten about the sorbet until I got this cold. Cooking without a sense of smell is frustrating. And I have no energy and yet dinner still has to be on the table so for the last week cooking has been a necessity, a chore. And then there is the sore throat. I’m full on fizzy water and hot tea and PEAR SORBET. Oh sweet delicious cooling find. Just enough spice so that I can actually taste it and so deliciously cool and soothing. And that bit of hard cider? it’s cough medicine alright?!? (plus, on a more practical level, that bit of alcohol helped keep the sorbet from turning to a brick after a month in the freezer)

I hope you like it. If anyone is inspired and does make this with actual fresh pears (Australia? I read on the Internets your pear season has just begun) you might want to add a smidgen of sugar and perhaps some citrus to prevent browning.


Ginger and Thyme Pear Sorbet
  • 2 cups pear nectar
  • 1 TBS rough cut fresh ginger
  • ½ tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp minced lemon zest
  • ½ cup hard cider (optional, I used a ginger hard cider)
  1. combine all ingredients except hard cider in medium sauce pan
  2. simmer just below boiling for about five minutes
  3. allow mixture to cool
  4. pour through a medium strainer
  5. chill strained mixture throughly (at least 4 hours)
  6. pour pear mixture (and optional ½ cup hard cider)into ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer instructions
  7. cover and freeze for 1 hour or until the sorbet is firm.
  8. serve on its own or as a refreshing slightly boozy float with additional hard cider
pear sorbet float for grownups

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