July 22nd is National Mango Day. When my boys came home with a celebratory box of very ripe mangoes, they had to become sorbet. This juicy version is incredibly smooth and refreshing, spiked with Citron vodka. We’ve garnished the treat with skewers of chili-salted fresh mango for a flavor spike like spicing the rim of your margarita glass!
To keep homemade sorbet from crystallizing into a mass of snow-coney ice crumbles, you need only add a splash of alcohol to the base. Matching the lime juice in the recipe, I used Absolut Citron for delicious results, but you can substitute rum for the vodka if you want to add a darker spice note.
My recipe makes 12 cups (6 pints) of sorbet–the amount it takes to reach the fill-line on my Mom’s old hand-cranked ice-cream maker. But you can easily halve the recipe to fit the volume of whatever ice-cream maker you prefer.
The only fiddly part to this recipe is cutting the bright orange flesh from the mangoes: a messy necessity. My best method is to slice each washed, unpeeled mango into three lengthwise pieces (leaving the large seed in the middle slice) Cut whatever flesh you can from the seed slice and then discard the seed. Then, with the sharp point of a knife, score the flesh side of the two remaining fleshy pieces into a crosshatch of cubes (like tic-tac-toe.) Next, pop the skin side of each slice upward (turning them inside out) and the cubes will separate, making it easier to slice them into a bowl. To blend the mango with the other ingredients until very smooth, I used a hand-held immersion blender, but you can also use a blender. Once you’ve made the sorbet base and done the ice-cream cranking, the sorbet will need to rest in the freezer for a good six hours. The results are well worth the effort.