Imagine sitting at a table with a wonderful view over the Grand Canal in Venice in the late summer sun, watching the gondolas while sipping an Aperol Spritz. Yes, I miss it too. Well, now you can have at least the taste at home with this Aperol and blood orange sorbet. And let me tell you, it is good!
What is Aperol?
Aperol is an Italian bitter aperitif, made of rhubarb and herbs and roots. It was first made just over 100 years ago in Padua, Italy. It is bright orange and is most often used to make an Aperol spritz. It is similar to Campari, but less bitter and with less alcohol (only 11%).
Fun fact: Aperol sold in Germany has a higher alcohol content there is no deposit to pay on glass bottles where the alcohol content is 15% or higher.
How should you drink Aperol?
The name Aperol derives from the French term apero – which means aperitif. It is, therefore, quite literally the perfect aperitif. And the best way to have Aperol is in an Aperol Spritz. It is the quintessential Italian holiday drink!
To make an aperol spritz, fill a large wine glass with ice then add:
- 60 ml Aperol
- 90 ml prosecco and
- enough soda water to fill the glass.
Garnish with a slice of orange and enjoy!
It is best served with cicchetti or small dishes, such as small sandwiches, olives, crisps and small portions of local dishes. I have had it served most often with green olives (sometimes stuffed with almonds) and crisps.
Aperol and blood orange sorbet – Aperol spritz in a sorbet
This Aperol and blood orange sorbet was so good, I was transported back to the canals in Venice with the first mouthful. And then as a sorbet cocktail, it just made me want to melt after a bad day.
I will have to make more soon – there have been a few bad days recently.
This was sooo easy, it literally only took a few minutes of work and some waiting. Pour almost all the ingredients in a saucepan. Stir until the sugar dissolves (about 2 minutes). Allow to cool overnight or for a few hours at least. Add the Aperol and freeze.
Don’t add too much Aperol
Although tempting, try not to pour too much Aperol into the mix. The alcohol in the Aperol will prevent the sorbet from freezing. While it will still taste good, the Aperol and blood orange sorbet will be very sloppy and difficult to scoop.
If you don’t have or don’t like Aperol, you can use another alcohol, like Campari or Lemoncello. As both have about double the amount of alcohol, only use 1/4 of a cup of each to ensure that your sorbet still freezes.
If you don’t have blood orange juice, use regular orange juice.
To churn, or not to churn, that is the question
I prefer the consistency that you achieve with an ice cream maker for this recipe. I use my Kitchenaid stand mixer with the ice cream attachment. I like the fact that I don’t have YET ANOTHER machine to find space for in the cupboard (which already has the hand mixer, blender, immersion blender, juicer, toaster, coffee machine, sandwich maker, coffee grinder and food processor). The bowl of the ice cream attachment lives in the freezer, ready for use, and the paddle fits in the bowl with the other attachments.
However, if even if you don’t have an ice cream maker, you can still make this Aperol and blood orange sorbet (you do not want to miss out on this one just because you don’t have an ice cream maker!). Follow these tips:
- Add a little less Aperol – 1/3 of a cup – as the alcohol in Aperol will prevent the sorbet from freezing.
- Pour the mix into a flat, freezer-proof dish for freezing, preferably one made of metal or glass (plastic insulates too well) and cover with a lid or plastic wrap.
- Remove the container from the freezer after about 1 hour and give it a good stir to help with consistency and prevent icicles. Return it to the freezer.
- Try not to eat too much at this stage!
- Remove the container again after another hour and repeat – you may have to do this another 1 or 2 times until the Aperol and blood orange sorbet has reached a good frozen consistency.
Aperol and blood orange sorbet
- 2 cups of blood orange juice approximately 6 oranges
- Squeeze of a lemon
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup Aperol
- Place all ingredients except the Aperol in a saucepan and warm over medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from the heat, pour into a heat-proof container with a lid and place in the refrigerator to cool completely (preferably overnight).
- Once chilled, add the Aperol and mix well.
- Pour the mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer's instructions until a uniform frozen consistency is reached (about 30 minutes). Transfer to an ice cream container and freeze for 2 hours before serving.
How to enjoy your Aperol and blood orange sorbet
There are two recommended ways to eat this delicious sorbet:
- A scoop in a bowl or cup. I find it is one sorbet that does not really suit a cone. It just does not taste right.
- In a glass – preferably a wide champagne glass – topped with sparkling wine or Prosecco if you can get it.
Either way, this Aperol spritz sorbet is just what you need this Summer. Trust me. And it really is the easiest and quickest recipe to make and it is perfect after a long day.
You need to make this Aperol and blood orange sorbet this summer
This sorbet is:
- extremely easy to make
- takes almost no effort or time
- is delicious and refreshing and
- will transport your tastebuds to a little trattoria overlooking the canals of Venice at sunset.
It is the perfect summer sorbet recipe and the one that you definitely must make this summer. You will thank me for it.
This is the final ice cream in this year’s Ice ice, Baby series. Be sure to check out our other recipes. Let us know if you make any of them too!