Summer Melon & Rose Petal Sorbet
Can we agree that there’s nothing quite like fruit that has been ripened on the vine in the warmth of the Summer sun? It’s true! This refreshing sorbet combines two of my favorite Summer melons and transforms them into a dessert with a delicate floral twist! This is the perfect recipe for the height of Summer—-and you can grow your own ingredients!
Related article: 10 Heat Loving Vegetables & Flowers to Grow From Seed
About the Ingredients
You know that I’m going to tell you that my heart lies with garden-to-table, seasonal ingredients. What is more Summer than roses and melons? Thanks to my partnership with Gurney’s Seeds this Summer, I’m growing two delicious melon varieties! One is a cantaloupe called ‘lil sweet improved’ and let me tell you! These little 1 pound melons are a vertical and/or small space gardener’s dream! The inside is juicy and the vines were prolific! I grew them over my DIY cattle panel trellis.
The second melon was my first ever venture into seedless watermelons! The ‘Delight improved‘ from Gurney’s was such a great learning experience for me this year. I grew them alongside two pollinator melons (I won’t go into the science behind that now) and ended up with some really beautiful, seedless watermelons.
Grow these ingredients: Use code FRECKLEDCALIFORNIAN to get FREE shipping off orders of $75+ with Gurney’s Seeds.
Summer garden roses! This special ingredient is a little floral twist. Are you a fan of floral flavors? I know not everyone loves the flavor of roses, so feel free to leave out this ingredient (and simply make the syrup with just sugar and water), but I really think rose pairs nicely with cantaloupes and sweet melon flavors. As always, only use organic rose petals. Many roses in stores are sprayed with pesticides.
A Quick Note on Ice Cream Makers
Do I really need an ice cream maker? A VERY popular question, and all I can say is that my ice cream maker gets wonderful use, and I love the ease of creating and customizing my own flavors based on my garden harvests. I don’t usually buy ice cream at the store anymore because I enjoy the process of making custom flavors from my garden (one of my favorites is my chamomile ice cream recipe). We have the Cuisinart 2-quart automatic ice cream maker.
If you don’t want to use an ice cream maker, you could try to freeze the mix in a shallow pan and treat it like a granita. The Kitchn has a post on how to make granita from any fruit. The texture will most likely become more icy/granular, but I haven’t tried it! Let me know if you do!
Related Article: Top 10 Flowers for a Potager Garden~ Calendula made my list!
Ingredients For Summer Melon & Rose Petal Sorbet
1/2 cup + 4 TBS Rose Simple Syrup *instructions below, you can leave out the rose if you don’t have any or don’t like the flavor.
3 cups cut melon of choice, cubed and CHILLED (in this case I used 2 cups of seedless watermelon and 1 cup cantaloupe). Cube while making the syrup and chill in the fridge.
2 TBS fresh squeezed lemon juice
NOTE: if you do not want to add roses, you can simply make the syrup without the rose petals—it will just be a plain simple syrup.
How to Make the Rose Simple Syrup
1 cup packed rose petals, organic and fragrant *this is why I love growing my own roses!
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
NOTES: This simple syrup is not meant for long term storage. Red or dark colored roses can give your syrup more color, but your sorbet will most likely be the same color as the melons you use.
Wash your rose petals.
Place the sugar, water , and rose petals in a small saucepan
Heat on medium.
Take a wooden spoon and gently macerate or press on the petals as the sugar dissolves.
Bring to a simmer. Stir and smash the petals a couple more times and then turn off and remove from heat.
Leave the rose petal simple syrup to cool completely.
While your simple syrup is cooling, cube your melon and keep it in the fridge so it is also chilled! This is best for the ice cream maker.
Make Your Sorbet Mixture
Place the melon chunks in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. If your watermelon/fruit has seeds, you’ll need to strain them out.
Add the lemon juice and 1/2 cup + 4 TBS of your rose simple syrup. I always start with 1/2 cup simple syrup when making sorbet, but adjust the sugar depending on how sweet the fruit is. See the tip below for how to test for optimum sugar level and get the perfect sorbet texture↓
Blend to mix.
IMPORTANT NOTE: All fruits have varying sugar levels, even different melons. The sugar level will mostly determine if your mixture freezes up creamy, icy, or slushy. If you really want to perfect your sorbet texture and skill, I highly recommend you watch this awesome video from Everyday Food on the egg test. It was a game changer for me!
You can save the excess rose simple syrup to flavor lemonade, sparkling water, drizzle over fruit salad, etc. but keep it in the fridge and use within a couple days.
Churn Your Sorbet!
Now we get to have some fun! Add your sorbet mixture to your ice cream maker and churn per the manufacturer’s instructions.
The Sorbet Texture is Best 2-4 Hours After Freezing
After churning your homemade sorbet in your ice cream maker, transfer the mixture to a bread pan or freezer-safe container.
Place a layer of parchment paper (cut to size) on the surface of the mixture to prevent ice crystals from forming. I do this in addition to a cover. If you don’t have a freezer safe container with a lid, I’ve also put my bread pan into a large ziploc bag (with the parchment paper layer on top always).
Freeze the sorbet for at least 2 hours! This can vary depending on your freezer and/or the depth of your container.
In my experience, the sorbet is easiest to scoop and has the ideal texture about 2-4 hours after freezing.
Can I save my sorbet for the next day?
Absolutely! I tried my sorbet the next day and it was still delicious, albeit slightly more icy. I did have to let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before it was scoopable….but I let my neighbor try it and she loved it, even the texture!
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