This delicate, fruity sorbet—pastel-pretty and dotted with brilliant red pomegranate seeds—reminds me of a festive glass of pink Champagne. Come September, when our pomegranates ripen in Provence, this appears at the dinner table frequently. The touch of honey here is essential, bringing a depth of flavor that sugar alone cannot provide.
Equipment: A blender or a food processor; an ice cream maker; 8 ice cream bowls, chilled in the freezer.
1. Cut off the crown of the pomegranate. Quarter the fruit lengthwise, being careful not to cut the seeds. Place the sections in a bowl of water. Roll the sections around in the water to dislodge the seeds. Strain out the water and discard all but the seeds.
2. In the blender or food processor, combine the pomegranate juice, buttermilk, and honey and puree until smooth. Chill thoroughly.
3. Transfer the mixture to the ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's directions. For best results, serve the sorbet in well-chilled bowls as soon as it is frozen. Do not re-freeze. Garnish with the pomegranate seeds before serving.
Note: When shopping for pomegranate juice, select one that is a clear, bright red, not cloudy, or your sorbet may end up a drab, pale pinkish orange. We find the bright and colorful clarity and flavor of Pom brand the best.
Recipe from The French Kitchen Cookbook, reprinted with permission from William Morrow. Copyright © 2013 by Patricia Wells.
Darra Goldstein is editor in chief of The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets, an 888-page reference guide to all things sweet. "The book is really a compendium of human desires, a cultural history of desire for things that are sweet and what it has caused in the world, in both the realm of pleasure and also of pain," she says.