This is a great recipe for dinner parties - your guests will be so impressed that you made a fun, slightly alcoholic sorbet, and when you tell them it’s flavoured with elderflowers you foraged yourself… they’ll be blown away! It’s great as a refreshing tipple after dinner, or you could serve this elderflower and gin sorbet as a lovely ‘amuse bouche’ to set the tone before a meal. Either way, it’s sure to impress and entertain!
I should point out, that as a nutritionist, this is not exactly a balanced dessert. It’s mostly sugar with a bit of alcohol, and has no fibre, protein, or many micro-nutrients. But I’m a big advocate of a balanced lifestyle - basing your diet around loads of whole plant foods, while making sure to enjoy the small things in life in moderation. I always tell my clients that avoiding restrictive habits leads to a really positive relationship with food, meaning you’re much more likely to keep to your healthy habits for life, rather than entering the all-too-common crash dieting cycle.
There’s only a small amount of gin in this recipe, and you could definitely omit it for an alcohol-free sorbet. Bear in mind that the alcohol does help it set a little softer, so if you do leave it out, remember to take the sorbet out of the freezer a few minutes before serving to make it easier to scoop.
If you have an ice cream machine (you can buy small household ones quite cheaply) this would work brilliantly in it. Otherwise you can follow the steps below for great sorbet without a machine.
For tips on foraging your own elderflowers, check out this guide by The Woodland Trust.
Elderflower and gin sorbet recipe (vegan)
Ingredients (serves 8):
1.5 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cup (40-50g) fresh elderflowers
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 Tbsp gin
Heat the sugar and water in a large lidded pan over a low heat, stirring until all the sugar has dissolved.
Remove from the heat and mix in the elderflowers. Put the lid on the pan to cover and allow to infuse overnight.
Strain the mixture through a sieve to remove the elderflowers, then add the lemon juice and gin.
Chill the mixture in the fridge, then freeze in your ice cream machine as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
If you don’t have an ice cream machine, place the sorbet mixture in a tub into the freezer. Every 30 minutes, take out of the freezer and stir/mash up with a fork. After a few times doing this, and the sorbet is firm, smooth it over and level out the sorbet and serve or keep in the freezer until ready to eat.
Nutrition (per serving):
Protein: 0.1g (Women: 0.2% / Men: 0.2%)
Iron: >0.1mg (Women: >0.1% / Men: >0.1%)
Calories: 169 (Women: 8.5% / Men: 6.8%)
Sugars: 38.1g (Women: 42.3% / Men: 31.8%)
Total Fats: 0.0g (Women: 0.0% / Men: 0.0%)
Saturated Fat: 0.0g (Women: 0.0% / Men: 0.0%)
Salt: 0.0g (Women: 0.0% / Men: 0.0%)
Fibre: 0.1g (Women: 0.3% / Men: 0.3%)